UBC Theses and Dissertations

UBC Theses Logo

UBC Theses and Dissertations

Flexible manufacturing in Vancouver's clothing industry Mather, Charles 1988

Your browser doesn't seem to have a PDF viewer, please download the PDF to view this item.

Item Metadata

Download

Media
831-UBC_1988_A8 M32_8.pdf [ 9.76MB ]
Metadata
JSON: 831-1.0097720.json
JSON-LD: 831-1.0097720-ld.json
RDF/XML (Pretty): 831-1.0097720-rdf.xml
RDF/JSON: 831-1.0097720-rdf.json
Turtle: 831-1.0097720-turtle.txt
N-Triples: 831-1.0097720-rdf-ntriples.txt
Original Record: 831-1.0097720-source.json
Full Text
831-1.0097720-fulltext.txt
Citation
831-1.0097720.ris

Full Text

FLEXIBLE MANUFACTURING IN VANCOUVER'S CLOTHING INDUSTRY By CHARLES MATHER B.A. (Hons) University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, 1985 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN THE REQUIREMENTS MASTER PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF FOR THE DEGREE OF OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Geography) We accept th i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA August 1988 © Charles Mather, 1988 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department of The University of British Columbia 1956 Main Mal l Vancouver, Canada V6T 1Y3 DE-6n/8-H i i Abstract F l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s have been implemented i n a number o f i n d u s t r i e s i n r e sponse t o the c r i s i s f o l l o w i n g the l o n g p o s t W o r l d War Two boom. These new methods have r e c e n t l y c a p t u r e d t h e a t t e n t i o n of s o c i a l s c i e n t i s t s from a b r o a d range of p e r s p e c t i v e s . In the l a r g e N o r t h A m e r i c a n a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y , where f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g i s b e s t documen ted , f i r m s a r e i n t r o d u c i n g programmable e q u i p m e n t , work teams a r e r e p l a c i n g the a s s e m b l y l i n e , i n v e n t o r i e s a r e kept a t a minimum, i m p r o v i n g t u r n a r o u n d t i m e and q u a l i t y a r e i m p o r t a n t g o a l s , and marke t s a r e s m a l l e r as s p e c i f i c consumers a r e t a r g e t e d . However , i t i s becoming i n c r e a s i n g l y c l e a r t h a t the e x p e r i e n c e of t he a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y i s not r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f o t h e r m a n u f a c t u r i n g s e c t o r s . The i m p l e m e n t a t i o n o f t h e new t e c h n i q u e s i s l i k e l y t o be d i f f e r e n t where the o r g a n i s a t i o n of p r o d u c t i o n i s d i f f e r e n t , t he s t r u c t u r e o f the i n d u s t r y i s l e s s c o n c e n t r a t e d , and where norms o f c o n s u m p t i o n a r e d i s t i n c t . T h i s t h e s i s f o c u s e s on t h e c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i n V a n c o u v e r , B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a . F o r t h i s s t u d y , i n t e r v i e w s were c o n d u c t e d w i t h f o u r t e e n c l o t h i n g f i r m s i n the c i t y , t e n w o r k e r s (most o f whom were C h i n e s e female i m m i g r a n t s ) , u n i o n o f f i c i a l s , equ ipment s a l e s p e o p l e and a government o f f i c i a l . The p r i m a r y r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n was t o u n d e r s t a n d the p e r v a s i v e n e s s o f t he new t e c h n i q u e s and t h e i r e f f e c t s on w o r k e r s and the i n d u s t r y i n V a n c o u v e r . The r e s u l t s o f t h i s s t u d y sugges t t h a t i t i s o v e r w h e l m i n g l y the v e r y l a r g e f a s h i o n f i r m s t h a t have i n v e s t e d i n f l e x i b l e m a c h i n e r y . These f i r m s a r e l a r g e enough t o l a y out t he c a p i t a l f o r the new mach ines w h i c h improve t u r n a r o u n d t ime and f l e x i b i l i t y , b o t h v i t a l f o r m a n u f a c t u r e r s o f f a s h i o n a p p a r e l . A second advan tage o f the equipment f o r f a c t o r y owners i s t h a t i t r e d u c e s t h e i r dependence on s k i l l e d male w o r k e r s who command the h i g h e s t wages on the shop f l o o r . F o r women w o r k e r s i n the i n d u s t r y ( m a c h i n i s t s ) , the new mach ines s i m p l y speed up work , making an a l r e a d y d e b i l i t a t i n g j o b w o r s e . On the o t h e r h a n d , many s m a l l e r f a s h i o n f i r m s a r e u n a b l e t o r a i s e the c a p i t a l f o r the equipment even though the p o t e n t i a l b e n e f i t s a r e s i g n i f i c a n t . In a d d i t i o n , s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n Vancouve r have not p u r c h a s e d the new t e c h n o l o g y because i t does no t s u i t t h e i r needs . F i r m s w i t h o u t the new t e c h n o l o g y wea ther downturns i n the economy p r i m a r i l y t h r o u g h w o r k e r s i n the s e c o n d a r y l a b o u r m a r k e t , w h i c h , i n V a n c o u v e r i s domina t ed by immig ra n t women. A t t h i s s t a g e i t seems t h a t a r e b a r r i e r s t o the w i d e s p r e a d i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of f l e x i b l e equipment i n Vancouve r c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . i v Table of Contents A b s t r a c t i i L i s t o f F i g u r e s v i L i s t o f T a b l e s v i L i s t o f P l a t e s v i i Acknowledgements v i i i CHAPTER I I n t r o d u c t i o n 1 1.1 C o n t e x t and S t r u c t u r e 1 1.2 S o u r c e s and M e t h o d o l o g y 7 CHAPTER I I L i t e r a t u r e R e v i e w : New r e g i m e s , i n d u s t r i a l geography and segmented l a b o u r m a r k e t s 12 2.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n 12 2 .2 Braverman and the l a b o u r p r o c e s s 14 2 .3 A p p r o a c h e s t o the l a b o u r p r o c e s s i n the 1980s 17 2 .4 M a s s a c h u s e t t s I n s t i t u t e of T e c h n o l o g y S c h o o l 28 2 . 5 C r i t i c i s m s of c u r r e n t f o r m u l a t i o n s 33 2 . 6 I n d u s t r i a l Geography and the New Regime 36 2 .7 Segmented Labour M a r k e t s 48 2 .8 C o n c l u s i o n 56 CHAPTER I I I H i s t o r y and C o n t e x t o f C l o t h i n g M a n u f a c t u r i n g i n V a n c o u v e r 59 3.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n 59 3 .2 A b r i e f h i s t o r y of c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n 60 3 .3 P o s t - i n d u s t r i a l V a n c o u v e r ? 66 3 .4 The O r g a n i s a t i o n of P r o d u c t i o n and the Labour P r o c e s s i n the C l o t h i n g I n d u s t r y 71 V 3 . 4 . 1 The o r g a n i s a t i o n of p r o d u c t i o n 72 3 . 4 . 2 The ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' c l o t h i n g f i r m w i t h o u t f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n methods 76 3 . 4 . 3 F l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n i n the ' m o d e r n ' 83 3 .4 C o n c l u s i o n 100 CHAPTER IV S u r v i v o r f i r m s and new i n v e s t m e n t 102 4.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n 102 4 . 2 Impor t T a r i f f s 103 4 .3 S u r v i v a l o f the s m a l l f i r m 112 4 .4 New Inves tmen t 117. 4 . 5 C o n c l u s i o n 126 CHAPTER V Immigrant l a b o u r i n V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y 127 5.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n 127 5 .2 E n t e r i n g the Seconda ry Labour M a r k e t 129 5 .3 U n i o n s 139 5 .4 Worker Response 149 5 .5 C o n c l u s i o n 153 CHAPTER VI F l e x i b l e M a n u f a c t u r i n g i n V a n c o u v e r ' s C l o t h i n g I n d u s t r y 155 6.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n 155 6 .2 F l e x i b l e M a n u f a c t u r i n g i n V a n c o u v e r ' s garment i n d u s t r y 156 6 .3 I m p l i c a t i o n s of F l e x i b l e P r o d u c t i o n 165 6 .4 C o n c l u s i o n 175 CHAPTER V I I C o n c l u s i o n 179 R e f e r e n c e s 186 v i L i s t of Figures 3.1 Employment i n the C a n a d i a n c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y 61 3.2 Women's and men 's c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a 64 3 .3 Garment m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a as a p e r c e n t a g e of t o t a l m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n the p r o v i n c e 66 3.4 L o c a t i o n of c l o t h i n g m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n Vancouve r 65 3 .5 Garment m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n V a n c o u v e r as a p e r c e n t a g e of t o t a l m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n the p r o v i n c e 70 3 .6 Garment p r o d u c t i o n i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a as a p e r c e n t a g e of t o t a l C a n a d i a n p r o d u c t i o n 70 3.7 C l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a 73 L i s t of Tables T a b l e I C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f p r o d u c t i o n under F o r d i s m and p o s t - F o r d i s m . 23 T a b l e I I Long te rm agreements n e g o t i a t e d w i t h Canada 107 T a b l e I I I A p p a r e n t m a r k e t s f o r C a n a d i a n c l o t h i n g 109 T a b l e IV C a n a d i a n i m p o r t s of c l o t h i n g from v a r i o u s s o u r c e s 111 T a b l e V A n n u a l r a t e s o f g rowth f o r e x p o r t i n g c o u n t r i e s under MFA f o u r and f i v e v i i T a b l e VI T a b u l a t e d d a t a from i n t e r v i e w s w i t h 14 m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n Vancouve r 116 T a b l e V I I Employment s i z e o f c l o t h i n g f i r m s i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a L i s t of Plates P l a t e 1 S t o r e f r o n t o f ' J o n e s Tent and A w n i n g " t a k e n c i r c a 1911 63 P l a t e 2 D e s i g n e r w o r k i n g on CAD machine 87 P l a t e 3 M a r k e r / g r a d e r machine w i t h p a t t e r n s and marker 89 P l a t e 4 Computer c u t t e r 92 P l a t e 5 Computer p l o t t e r 94 P l a t e 6 C o m p u t e r i s e d f l e x i b l e s ewing machine 95 P l a t e 7 ' P a r i s p r e s s e r ' 98 Acknowledgements I w o u l d l i k e t o thank Dan H i e b e r t , whose encouragement and a s s i s t a n c e were i n v a l u a b l e i n the r e s e a r c h and w r i t i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s . Thanks a r e a l s o due t o G e r r y P r a t t , my second r e a d e r , who was h e l p f u l t h r o u g h o u t my s t a y a t UBC. A t home I w o u l d l i k e t o thank C e c i l e f o r her u n w a v e r i n g s u p p o r t ; and C h r i s Rogerson f o r h i s u s e f u l a d v i c e and m a t e r i a l . S p e c i a l t h a n k s goes t o my p a r e n t s who were s u p p o r t i v e t h r o u g h t h i c k and t h i n . F i n a l l y I am g r a t e f u l t o my f r i e n d s i n the geography depar tment a t UBC who were l o t s of f u n . 1 CHAPTER I Introduction 1.1 Context and Structure The mid 1970s marked an i m p o r t a n t t u r n i n g p o i n t i n the economies o f most advanced c a p i t a l i s t c o u n t r i e s ( H a r v e y , 1 9 8 7 ) . S h a r p d e c l i n e s i n employment , s l o w e r g rowth and d e c l i n i n g p r o d u c t i v i t y l e v e l s were e v i d e n c e t h a t t he l o n g p o s t war boom had come t o an e n d . M a n u f a c t u r i n g , a r g u a b l y t h e f o u n d a t i o n o f most w e s t e r n c a p i t a l i s t e conomies ( P e e t , 1987a) , was r e l i n q u i s h i n g i t s p o s i t i o n t o t h e s e r v i c e s e c t o r . In B e l g i u m and the U n i t e d Kingdom, two o f t h e o l d e r i n d u s t r i a l n a t i o n s , employment i n m a n u f a c t u r i n g d e c r e a s e d i n r e a l te rms by t w e n t y - t h r e e pe r c e n t be tween 1975 and 1982. I n N o r t h A m e r i c a the weaken ing of t h e s e c t o r , a l t h o u g h l e s s s e v e r e , was a cause f o r g r e a t c o n c e r n ( P e e t , 1987b) . R i g i d employment c o n t r a c t s , l a b o u r d i s p u t e s , r i s i n g wages , d e c l i n i n g p r o d u c t i v i t y l e v e l s , and the s a t u r a t i o n of d o m e s t i c m a r k e t s were l o c a l f a c t o r s r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the c r i s i s i n m a n u f a c t u r i n g ( H o l m e s , 1987a ) . The d e c l i n e i n the s e c t o r was n o t , h o w e v e r , due s o l e l y t o p r o b l e m s on the shop f l o o r o r i n consumer demand i n w e s t e r n c a p i t a l i s t c o u n t r i e s . 2 Cheaper i m p o r t e d goods from J a p a n , Hong Kong and T a i w a n , Newly I n d u s t r i a l i s i n g C o u n t r i e s ( N I C s ) , c a p t u r e d m a r k e t s p r e v i o u s l y the domain o f l o c a l p r o d u c e r s ( T h r i f t , 1 9 8 6 ) . W o r l d w i d e m a n u f a c t u r i n g employment i n c r e a s e d d r a m a t i c a l l y from 1974 t o 1983 i n t h e N I C s , r e f l e c t i n g t h e i r r a p i d r i s e t o d o m i n a n c e , w h i l e i n the advanced c a p i t a l i s t c o u n t r i e s 8 m i l l i o n j o b s were l o s t i n the s e c t o r ( P e e t , 1 9 8 7 b ) . M a n u f a c t u r e r s r e s p o n d e d t o the c r i s i s i n v a r i o u s ways . Many of the l a r g e r f i r m s , a t t r a c t e d by a c h e a p e r and more d o c i l e l a b o u r f o r c e i n the T h i r d W o r l d , r e l o c a t e d t h e i r p r o d u c t i o n f a c i l i t i e s o f f s h o r e , f u r t h e r w e a k e n i n g m a n u f a c t u r i n g d o m e s t i c a l l y ( F r o b e l et al, 1980; J e n k i n s , 1984; T h r i f t , 1986 ) . The movement o f c a p i t a l t o a r e a s where l a b o u r i s l e s s e x p e n s i v e and u n i o n s a r e a b s e n t a l s o o c c u r r e d a t a n a t i o n a l s c a l e i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s , u n d e r m i n i n g the economic s t r u c t u r e s o f t h e t r a d i t i o n a l i n d u s t r i a l c e n t r e s ( C l a r k , 1986 ) . F i r m s u n a b l e or u n w i l l i n g t o r e l o c a t e r e s t r u c t u r e d in situ, r e -e s t a b l i s h i n g the c o n d i t i o n s f o r a c c u m u l a t i o n t h r o u g h s t r a t e g i e s known as f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g , f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n and f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n sy s t ems ( A g l i e t t a , 1979; P i o r e and S a b e l , 1 9 8 4 ) . P r o d u c t i o n r u n s , a c c o r d i n g t o the ' r u l e s ' o f the new t e c h n i q u e s a r e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y s h o r t e r and g e a r e d t o more v o l a t i l e and h e t e r o g e n e o u s m a r k e t s , l a b o u r i s o f t e n f l e x i b l y d e p l o y e d , and mach ines a r e programmable (Holmes , 1 9 8 7 a ) . 3 F o r a number o f i m p o r t a n t r e a s o n s the a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y has p r o v i d e d the e m p i r i c a l base (and t h e t e r m i n o l o g y viz. F o r d i s m ; p o s t - F o r d i s m ) f o r t h e t r a n s i t i o n t o new methods i n m a n u f a c t u r i n g . On the shop f l o o r o f l a r g e N o r t h A m e r i c a n c o r p o r a t i o n s , the t r a n s i t i o n from o l d t o new p r o d u c t i o n methods t h r o u g h r e s t r u c t u r i n g i s as c l e a r as i t i s p e r v a s i v e . However , t h e r e i s g r o w i n g s u s p i c i o n , p a r t i c u l a r l y among g e o g r a p h e r s , t h a t t h e e x p e r i e n c e o f t he a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y i s no t r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f o t h e r m a n u f a c t u r i n g s e c t o r s . S t r a t e g i e s of r e s t r u c t u r i n g a r e l i k e l y t o be d i f f e r e n t where t h e o r g a n i s a t i o n o f p r o d u c t i o n i s d i f f e r e n t , the s t r u c t u r e of t he i n d u s t r y i s l e s s c o n c e n t r a t e d , and where norms of c o n s u m p t i o n a r e d i s t i n c t (Holmes , 1987b; S c h r o e n b e r g e r , 1987; G e r t l e r , 1 9 8 8 ) . I n a d d i t i o n , as a number o f w r i t e r s have n o t e d , t h e s h i f t t o new methods o f p r o d u c t i o n i s not l i k e l y t o m a n i f e s t i t s e l f i m m e d i a t e l y i n a l l s e c t o r s o f the economy. Roobeek ( 1 9 8 7 ) , f o r example a r g u e s t h a t , . . . i t c a n n o t y e t be s a i d t h a t F o r d i s m has e n d e d , and p o s t - F o r d i s m has begun . T h i s d i v i s i o n i s i r r e l e v a n t as l o n g as i n s t i t u t i o n s o f F o r d i s t o r i g i n s c o n t i n u e t o e x i s t o r a d a p t , w h i l e new i n s t i t u t i o n a l forms a r e e m e r g i n g . The t r a n s i t i o n t o p o s t - F o r d i s m i s a more g r a d u a l p r o c e s s w h i c h w i l l c o n t i n u e i n t o the 1990s (Roobeek , 1987; p . 1 6 9 ) . 4 The p r i m a r y i s s u e a d d r e s s e d i n t h i s pape r i s framed a round t h e quo te c i t e d a b o v e . I was c o n c e r n e d t o u n d e r s t a n d the t r a n s i t i o n t o new methods o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g , o r more b r o a d l y , the s h i f t from F o r d i s m t o p o s t - F o r d i s m i n V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . The main r e s e a r c h q u e s t i o n s were : w h i c h a r e the f i r m s t h a t have implemented t h e new t e c h n o l o g y , and what a r e t h e e f f e c t s o f t h e s e changes on the i n d u s t r y and w o r k e r s on the shop f l o o r . A t t h e same . t i m e , I was c o n c e r n e d w i t h w h i c h f i r m s had not i n v e s t e d i n new t e c h n o l o g y , and how t h e y had r e sponded t o t h e r e c e s s i o n s o f the 1970s and e a r l y 1980s . The r e s u l t s o f the case s t u d y on V a n c o u v e r ' s garment i n d u s t r y sugges t t h a t the move t o p o s t - F o r d i s m i s i n i t s i n f a n c y . Many f i r m s canno t a f f o r d the new e q u i p m e n t , w h i l e o t h e r s a r e s i m p l y not i n t e r e s t e d i n i m p r o v i n g f l e x i b i l i t y t o r e s p o n d t o c h a n g i n g f a s h i o n s . These f i r m s have wea the red downturns i n the economy t h r o u g h the use o f a s e c o n d a r y l a b o u r f o r c e c o m p r i s i n g m a i n l y o f i m m i g r a n t women. L a r g e r f a s h i o n f i r m s , on the o t h e r h a n d , have improved t h e i r r e s p o n s e t ime and f l e x i b i l i t y t o c h a n g i n g s t y l e s and demand t h r o u g h f l e x i b l e e q u i p m e n t . I t a p p e a r s t h a t the move t o new methods of p r o d u c t i o n i n V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y w i l l be uneven and c o m p l e x . There a r e a number of r e a s o n s why the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i s an e m i n e n t l y s u i t a b l e s e c t o r t o b roaden our u n d e r s t a n d i n g of r e s t r u c t u r i n g and new methods of 5 p r o d u c t i o n , and the e f f e c t s o f t he se changes on the l a b o u r , p r o c e s s , t h e geography o f p r o d u c t i o n and the s t r u c t u r e of l a b o u r m a r k e t s . The c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i s one of the most f o o t l o o s e and c o m p e t i t i v e o f a l l m a n u f a c t u r i n g s e c t o r s r e q u i r i n g v e r y l i t t l e c a p i t a l i n v e s t m e n t ( S a f a , 1981) . As e a r l y as the 1930s , c l o t h i n g f i r m s began t o r e l o c a t e p r o d u c t i o n p l a n t s ( W a l d i n g e r , 1986) , and i n t h e 1960s and 1970s t h i s p r o c e s s t ook o f f as m a n u f a c t u r e r s moved p r o d u c t i o n t o the T h i r d W o r l d t o t ake advan tage o f cheape r l a b o u r . The h i g h l a b o u r c o n t e n t i n p r o d u c t i o n p r o v i d e s an i n t e r e s t i n g example o f the e f f e c t s of the new t e c h n i q u e s on work . s k i l l s and the s t r u c t u r e of the l a b o u r p r o c e s s . In a d d i t i o n , work i n c l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s h a s , up u n t i l r e c e n t l y , been e x t r e m e l y r e s i s t a n t t o m e c h a n i s a t i o n . F i n a l l y , r e s t r u c t u r i n g i n the c l o t h i n g s e c t o r p e r m i t s an a n a l y s i s o f t he r o l e o f i m m i g r a n t women i n t h i s i n d u s t r y . The main body of the t h e s i s , e x c l u d i n g the c o n c l u d i n g c h a p t e r , i s d i v i d e d i n t o f i v e s e c t i o n s . T h e m a t i c a l l y , the f o c u s s h i f t s from the l i t e r a t u r e r e v i e w and the c o n t e x t o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n V a n c o u v e r , t o garment f i r m s and w o r k e r s i n t h e c i t y ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y , and f i n a l l y t o f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s . More s p e c i f i c a l l y , c h a p t e r two d e a l s w i t h t h r e e b o d i e s o f l i t e r a t u r e w h i c h a r e c o n s i d e r e d i m p o r t a n t i n u n d e r s t a n d i n g c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n , r e s t r u c t u r i n g and f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s . The f i r s t a r e a o f r e s e a r c h c o n c e r n s s k i l l and d e s k i l l i n g , and 6 the e f f e c t s new t e c h n i q u e s w i l l have on w o r k e r s on the shop f l o o r . In the s econd and t h i r d s e c t i o n s o f t h i s c h a p t e r , the i n d u s t r i a l geog raphy and l a b o u r marke t s e g m e n t a t i o n l i t e r a t u r e s a r e e x a m i n e d , b o t h o f w h i c h a d d r e s s changes w i t h new m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s . These t h r e e a r e a s of r e s e a r c h a r e drawn upon i n the c o u r s e o f t he t h e s i s t o compare and c o n t r a s t the s e c o n d a r y l i t e r a t u r e w i t h e m p i r i c a l m a t e r i a l c o l l e c t e d i n V a n c o u v e r . In c h a p t e r t h r e e , a b r i e f h i s t o r y of garment p r o d u c t i o n i n Vancouver i s o u t l i n e d and the c o n t e m p o r a r y c o n t e x t o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n t h e c i t y i s e x a m i n e d . I n . t h i s c h a p t e r a c o m p a r i s o n i s a l s o made between a t y p i c a l ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' f i r m w i t h o u t f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s and a ' m o d e r n ' f i r m , o r one. t h a t has implemented the new methods . The a i m o f t h i s c h a p t e r i s t o p r o v i d e the c o n t e x t . f o r t h e e m p i r i c a l d a t a on m a n u f a c t u r e r s u s i n g f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n . t e c h n i q u e s , and f o r two o t h e r t y p e s of f i r m s i n V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . From t h i s s t a g e , t h e t h e s i s f o l l o w s t h e theme d e v e l o p e d by Roobeek (1987) i n the q u o t e c i t e d a b o v e : i n c h a p t e r f o u r , two t y p e s o f f i r m s i n the c i t y w h i c h have no t imp lemen ted f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s a r e e x a m i n e d . They a r e new i n v e s t o r f i r m s m a i n l y from Hong Kong and what I have c a l l e d s m a l l s u r v i v o r f i r m s . These companies m a i n t a i n f l e x i b i l i t y i n p r o d u c t i o n t h r o u g h a ' c o n t i n g e n t ' l a b o u r f o r c e w h i c h i s h i r e d or f i r e d 7 d e p e n d i n g on economic c o n d i t i o n s . S i n c e t h i s method has been used by c l o t h i n g f i r m s f o r a v e r y l o n g t i m e , i t i s no t new, a l t h o u g h i t may be i n c r e a s i n g i n i m p o r t a n c e . The n a t u r e of the l a b o u r f o r c e . i n V a n c o u v e r , w h i c h c o m p l i m e n t s the d i s c u s s i o n i n c h a p t e r f o u r , i s examined i n c h a p t e r f i v e . I n t e r v i e w s w i t h C h i n e s e immigran t women w o r k e r s and the u n i o n s i n the c i t y a r e d i s c u s s e d t o examine the work e x p e r i e n c e of t h i s g r o u p s i n the s e c o n d a r y l a b o u r m a r k e t . W h i l e the f i r m s a n a l y s e d i n c h a p t e r f o u r have t u r n e d t o t h e i r l a b o u r f o r c e f o r f l e x i b i l i t y , the m a n u f a c t u r e r s examined i n c h a p t e r s i x , h a v i n g implemented f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g e q u i p m e n t , a p p r o x i m a t e the F o r d i s t model i n p r o d u c t i o n . 1.2 Sources and Methodology P u b l i s h e d s o u r c e s i n c l u d e v a r i o u s l o c a l and n a t i o n a l n e w s p a p e r s ; b u s i n e s s and o t h e r m a g a z i n e s ; o f f i c i a l s t a t i s t i c a l p u b l i c a t i o n s ; and government documents and n e w s l e t t e r s . The s m a l l s i z e o f V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y , u n t i l r e c e n t l y , i s r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the s c a n t a t t e n t i o n the s e c t o r has r e c e i v e d by s o c i a l s c i e n t i s t s . As a r e s u l t , s e c o n d a r y l i t e r a t u r e on the a p p a r e l i n d u s t r y i s drawn from r e s e a r c h p a p e r s and books based on c l o t h i n g s e c t o r s i n M o n t r e a l and T o r o n t o , the U n i t e d S t a t e s , t he 8 U n i t e d Kingdom, and e l s e w h e r e i n E u r o p e . I n t e r v i e w s w i t h c l o t h i n g f a c t o r y managers or owne r s , u n i o n o f f i c i a l s , government r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s and w o r k e r s form the b a s i s f o r the e m p i r i c a l m a t e r i a l on V a n c o u v e r ' s garment i n d u s t r y . S i n c e the i n i t i a l f o c u s o f the t h e s i s was f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s i n t h e c l o t h i n g i n d s u s t r y , f i r m s t h a t were i m p l e m e n t i n g t h e new methods were sought o u t . However , once two l a r g e f a s h i o n f i r m s had been i n t e r v i e w e d i n d e p t h , i t became e v i d e n t t h a t t h e s e t y p e s o f f i r m s r e p r e s e n t e d o n l y a s m a l l m i n o r i t y o f m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n the c i t y . Two o t h e r t y p e s o f f i r m s were r e c o g n i s a b l e : new i n v e s t o r companies a n d , what I have c a l l e d s m a l l s u r v i v o r f i r m s . To b roaden t h e s a m p l e , f a i r l y s t r u c t u r e d i n t e r v i e w s were c o n d u c t e d w i t h t h e s e two t y p e s of f i r m s as w e l l as o t h e r c l o t h i n g m a n u f a c t u r e r s w i t h f l e x i b l e t e c h n o l o g y . Q u e s t i o n s were a imed a t the n a t u r e o f p r o d u c t i o n on the shop f l o o r and whether i t had been a f f e c t e d by new m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s . Among f i r m s w h i c h had implemented t h e new t e c h n i q u e s I was i n t e r e s t e d i n how much equipment t h e f i r m had p u r c h a s e d and i t s e f f e c t s on p r o d u c t i o n and w o r k e r s on the shop f l o o r . Fo r f i r m s w i t h o u t the new equ ipmen t t h e q u e s t i o n s f o c u s s e d on whether they c o u l d n o t p u r c h a s e t h e f l e x i b l e equipment or whether they were s i m p l y no t i n t e r e s t e d i n i t . 9 A random s a m p l i n g t e c h n i q u e was not employed i n c h o o s i n g the f i r m s ; i n s t e a d non-random samples were t a k e n from r e c o g n i s a b l e g r o u p s , i n t h i s c a s e , t y p e s o f f i r m s . F o r t h i s s t u d y , i n t e r v i e w s were c o n d u c t e d w i t h the managers or owners o f 8 l a r g e and s m a l l f a s h i o n a p p a r e l m a n u f a c t u r e r s ; 2 new i n v e s t o r f i r m s ; and 4 s m a l l s u r v i v o r s f i r m s . The t o t a l s amp le , 14 c l o t h i n g f i r m s and one t e x t i l e company, i s j u s t over 18 per c e n t o f the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i n V a n c o u v e r . By c l o t h i n g t y p e , the b i a s i n the sample towards f a s h i o n a p p a r e l f i r m s i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e o f t he i n d u s t r y as a w h o l e . A l t h o u g h the d e f i n i t i o n o f f a s h i o n c l o t h i n g may be ambiguous , b o t h s t a t i s t i c s and m a n u f a c t u r e r s d i r e c t o r i e s show t h a t these f i r m s d o m i n a t e t h e c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i n Vancouve r (see c h a p t e r s t h r e e and s i x ) . In t e rms o f employment s i z e , on the o t h e r h a n d , the sample i s c e r t a i n l y b i a s e d towards l a r g e r f i r m s w h i l e on the whole m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n the c i t y t e n d t o be s m a l l e r . T h i s b i a s a f f e c t e d the r e s u l t s i n t h a t s m a l l e r . f i r m s a r e l e s s l i k e l y t o i n v e s t i n f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g equ ipment (see c h a p t e r s i x ) . Ano the r p o s s i b l e p r o b l e m i n the s a m p l i n g t e c h n i q u e i s the c a t e g o r i e s o f f i r m s w h i c h were c h o s e n . W h i l e t h i s may be a p r o b l e m i n t h i s s t u d y , the c a t e g o r i e s were c h o s e n a f t e r e x t e n d e d d i s c u s s i o n s w i t h the managers o f f i r m s w i t h an i n d e p t h u n d e r s t a n d i n g o f the i n d u s t r y . 10 I n t e r v i e w s were h e l d w i t h n i n e immig ran t women w o r k e r s and one male w o r k e r w i t h a l o o s e l y s t r u c t u r e d q u e s t i o n n a i r e o f open ended q u e s t i o n s . A t ape r e c o r d e r was not used t o p r e v e n t t h e r e s p o n d e n t s f rom becoming n e r v o u s o r uneasy w h i c h m i g h t have a f f e c t e d the q u a l i t y of the i n t e r v i e w . I n s t e a d , r e s p o n s e s were hand w r i t t e n i n f r o n t o f t he w o r k e r s so t h a t t hey c o u l d see what I was w r i t i n g and c o r r e c t any e r r o r s or m i s u n d e r s t a n d i n g s . I f e l t t h a t t h i s method c r e a t e d t r u s t between m y s e l f and the w o r k e r s and l e d t o a more r e l a x e d and l e s s f o r m a l env i ronmen t i n the i n t e r v i e w s . A t the same t i m e , however , a d i s a d v a n t a g e o f t h i s t e c h n i q u e i s t h a t t he f l o w of d i s c u s s i o n was p e r i o d i c a l l y i n t e r r u p t e d w h i l e I wro te down r e s p o n s e s . S t i l l , t h i s p r o b l e m seemed t o be l e s s i m p o r t a n t t han c r e a t i n g a l e v e l of t r u s t between the w o r k e r s and m y s e l f . In the i n t e r v i e w s w i t h women w o r k e r s I was c o n c e r n e d t o u n d e r s t a n d t h e i r work e x p e r i e n c e i n t h e c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y as i m m i g r a n t s , and t h e i r f e e l i n g s t owards the u n i o n s i n the c i t y . S i n c e t h e y domina te the sewing p o s i t i o n s i n V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y q u e s t i o n s were a l s o a imed a t f i n d i n g how t h e y came t o be employed i n garment f a c t o r i e s . In most c a s e s , however , t he i n t e r v i e w s were u n s t r u c t u r e d , e a c h t a k i n g a d i f f e r e n t r o u t e . I f e e l t h a t t h i s method was u s e f u l i n u n d e r s t a n d i n g the c o m p l e x i t y o f t h e i r w o r k i n g l i v e s . F i n a l l y , r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s from a l l t h r e e garment u n i o n s i n t h e c i t y were a l s o i n t e r v i e w e d u s i n g u n s t r u c t u r e d q u e s t i o n n a i r e s . Q u e s t i o n s were a imed p r i m a r i l y a t u n d e r s t a n d i n g the p rob lems of o r g a n i s i n g immig ran t w o r k e r s i n V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . CHAPTER II L i t e r a t u r e Review: New regimes, i n d u s t r i a l geography and segmented labour markets 2.1 Introduction In the 1970s and early 1980s, the central role played by manufacturing in the economies of most advanced c a p i t a l i s t countries was eroded. Almost every member of the Organisation for Economic Co-peration and Development (OECD) experienced a decline in output and employment in thi s sector (Holmes and Leys, 1987). Responses to the c r i s i s include the relocation of production to regions where wages are lower or unions are absent, the closing of fa c t o r i e s , and the implementation of new manufacturing techniques on the shop f l o o r . The impact of new production methods, which have captured the attention of so c i a l s c i e n t i s t s from a broad range of perspectives (Aglietta, 1979; L i p i e t z , 1986; Piore and Sabel, 1984), are being f e l t from the shop f l o o r , to the broader organisation of production, and the structure of labour markets. There have been some surprising 'winners' as a number of t r a d i t i o n a l l y declining sectors, such as clothing production, have re^emerged in the economies of many advanced i n d u s t r i a l countries. T h i s c h a p t e r f a l l s i n t o t h r e e s e c t i o n s , e a c h o f w h i c h a d d r e s s e s an a r e a of r e s e a r c h r e l e v a n t t o r e s t r u c t u r i n g i n the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . The a i m of the r e v i e w i s t w o f o l d : t he e x t a n t l i t e r a t u r e p r o v i d e s a c o n t e x t w i t h w h i c h t o examine and c o n t r a s t t h e p e c u l i a r i t i e s o f f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n i n the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y w i t h o t h e r s e c t o r s where t h e l i t e r a t u r e i s more d e v e l o p e d ; and s e c o n d l y a framework i s d e v e l o p e d f o r t he i n v e s t i g a t i o n of V a n c o u v e r ' s a p p a r e l i n d u s t r y . In the f i r s t s e c t i o n , the a p p r o a c h e s of the F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n i s t s and the M a s s a c h u s e t t s I n s t i t u t e o f T e c h n o l o g y (MIT) s c h o o l a r e compared t o examine c o n t r a s t i n g v i e w s on t h e e f f e c t s f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s have had on w o r k e r ' s s k i l l s and work l i f e i n g e n e r a l . B r a v e r m a n ' s s e m i n a l a n a l y s i s on d e s k i l l i n g p r o v i d e s t h e b a c k c l o t h t o a d i s c u s s i o n of the p r o p o n e n t s o f the F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n s c h o o l , who a rgue t h a t work i s f u r t h e r d e s k i l l e d and d e g r a d e d d e s p i t e t he i n t r o d u c t i o n of new t e c h n i q u e s . On t h e o t h e r h a n d , the MIT s c h o o l c o n t e n d s t h a t f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n , t h e i r t e rm f o r t he new p r o d u c t i o n methods , w i l l l i b e r a t e l a b o u r from the t e d i u m of s i m p l i f i e d , r e p e t i t i v e w o r k . N e i t h e r t h e o r y i s d e f i n i t i v e , however , and i t i s a r g u e d t h a t g e n e r a l i s a t i o n s on the q u e s t i o n o f d e s k i l l i n g o r a l i b e r a t e d w o r k i n g c l a s s may be t oo s i m p l i s t i c . I n s t e a d , i t seems t h a t w h i l e t e n d e n c i e s may be r e c o g n i s e d , the e f f e c t s o f f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n on s k i l l s and work l i f e d i f f e r a c r o s s m a n u f a c t u r i n g s e c t o r s , and f i r m c o n c l u s i o n s 14 can o n l y be drawn on the b a s i s o f s p e c i f i c i n d u s t r i e s and s p e c i f i c p l a c e s . I n t h e s e c o n d s e c t i o n o f the c h a p t e r , r e s e a r c h on the geography o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g i s e x a m i n e d , p a y i n g p a r t i c u l a r a t t e n t i o n . t o l o c a t i o n a l changes as m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n d u s t r i e s implement new p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s . A l t h o u g h most o f t h i s s e c t i o n d e a l s w i t h r e s e a r c h on the a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y , l i t e r a t u r e on the s p a t i a l e f f e c t s o f t he new t e c h n i q u e s on the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i s a l s o d i s c u s s e d . In the f i n a l s e c t i o n , segmented l a b o u r market t h e o r y i s examined t o s e t t he c o n t e x t f o r the i s s u e of immig ran t l a b o u r and more i m p o r t a n t l y , immigrant women i n the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . These women a r e the backbone of the a p p a r e l s e c t o r i n N o r t h A m e r i c a . a n d a r e a c e n t r a l e lement i n i t s r e s t r u c t u r i n g . 2.2 Braverman and the labour process I n Labour and Monopoly Capital, B r a v e r m a n ' s (1974) o b j e c t i v e i s t o r e k i n d l e i n t e r e s t i n p r o c e s s e s on the shop f l o o r . F o l l o w i n g a M a r x i s t p e r s p e c t i v e , h i s a n a l y s i s t r a c e s t h e t r a n s f o r m a t i o n o f work i n c a p i t a l i s t e n t e r p r i s e s i n t h e t w e n t i e t h c e n t u r y . The few s t u d i e s i n the f i e l d s i n c e t h e p i o n e e r i n g work o f Marx a r e , a c c o r d i n g 15 t o Braverman (1974) " . . . e i t h e r s i m p l i f i c a t i o n s o r o u t r i g h t m i s r e a d i n g s o f r e a l i t y " ( p . 4 - 5 ) . The d e a r t h o f r e s e a r c h on the l a b o u r p r o c e s s i s a symptom o f the s h i f t by many r a d i c a l s o c i a l s c i e n t i s t s from the l a b o u r p r o c e s s t o o t h e r s e e m i n g l y more u r g e n t i s s u e s i n c a p i t a l i s t s o c i e t y . The l a c u n a was p a r t i c u l a r l y e v i d e n t d u r i n g the 1950s and 1960s when the V i e t n a m war , c i v i l r i g h t s and n u c l e a r weapons c a p t u r e d the a t t e n t i o n of the l e f t ( Z i m b a l i s t , 1 9 7 9 ) . The main theme i n B r a v e r m a n ' s book i s t he p r o g r e s s i v e f r a g m e n t a t i o n , d e s k i l l i n g and d e g r a d a t i o n of work t o c o n t r o l the pace and s t r u c t u r e o f work on the shop f l o o r . F r e d e r i c k T a y l o r ' s t h r e e p r i n c i p l e s o f s c i e n t i f i c management a r e c r u c i a l i n u n d e r s t a n d i n g the p r o c e s s by w h i c h c r a f t s a r e d e s t r o y e d and work i s s i m p l i f i e d . T a y l o r ' s f i r s t p r i n c i p l e i s t h e g a t h e r i n g of t he c r a f t s p e r s o n ' s knowledge of t he work p r o c e s s t o d i s s o c i a t e " . . . t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s from the s k i l l s o f t he w o r k e r " ( p . 1 1 3 ) . As l o n g as l a b o u r c o n t r o l l e d t h e knowledge of t h e i r work , managers were unab l e t o d i c t a t e the pace of p r o d u c t i o n . When c r a f t knowledge i s l o s t and r educed t o r u l e s and f o r m u l a e , managers a r e a b l e t o s e t t he speed and s t r u c t u r e o f work . The second p r i n c i p l e , t h e s e p a r a t i o n of c o n c e p t i o n from e x e c u t i o n , e n a b l e s c a p i t a l i s t s t o f u r t h e r c o n t r o l t he s t r u c t u r e o f work on the shop f l o o r . As t a s k s a r e f ragmented and s i m p l i f i e d , and the f l o w of work t h r o u g h the f a c t o r y i s o r g a n i s e d , l a b o u r i s r educed t o c a r r y i n g out s i m p l y the manual a s p e c t s o f p r o d u c t i o n . F i n a l l y , t h e t h i r d p r i n c i p l e i s t he use of t he f i r s t two t o " c o n t r o l each s t e p of t he l a b o u r p r o c e s s and i t s mode o f e x e c u t i o n " ( p . 1 1 9 ) . I m p l e m e n t a t i o n of t h e s e t h r e e ' s c i e n t i f i c ' p r i n c i p l e s , Braverman a r g u e s , g i v e s management c o n t r o l ove r the structure and pace o f p r o d u c t i o n ; once a c r a f t worke r l o s e s c o n t r o l ove r t h e s e , work i s d e s k i l l e d . B r a v e r m a n ' s d e f i n i t i o n of d e s k i l l i n g i s a d o p t e d t o examine the e f f e c t s o f the new t e c h n i q u e s a t a l a t e r s t a g e ( c h a p t e r s i x ) . Braverman i s a l s o c o n c e r n e d w i t h d e b u n k i n g the b e l i e f t h a t t h e i n t r o d u c t i o n of t e c h n o l o g y has the e f f e c t o f u p g r a d i n g w o r k e r ' s s k i l l s . On the c o n t r a r y , he a r g u e s , t e c h n o l o g y does not p l a y a n e u t r a l r o l e i n the p r o d u c t i o n p r o c e s s bu t i s a t o o l used by c a p i t a l i s t s t o rob l a b o u r o f i t s knowledge of the work p r o c e s s ( t h e r e b y f o l l o w i n g the f i r s t p r i n c i p l e of s c i e n t i f i c management) . As t h i s knowledge l e a v e s the shop f l o o r t o become p e r m a n e n t l y h o u s e d i n the p l a n n i n g s e c t i o n o r i s embodied i n the m a c h i n e r y , l a b o u r i s r educed t o c a r r y i n g ou t s t r i c t l y d e f i n e d and s i m p l i f i e d t a s k s . C r a f t s a r e d e s t r o y e d , work i s f r agmen ted and l a b o u r i s r e d u c e d t o " i n s t r u m e n t s o f p r o d u c t i o n " ( B r a v e r m a n , 1974, p . 1 7 2 ) . The impac t of B r a v e r m a n ' s s e m i n a l s t udy i n u n c o v e r i n g t h e p r e v i o u s l y ' f o r g o t t e n ' w o r l d of f a c t o r y and o f f i c e w o r k e r s c a n n o t be u n d e r e s t i m a t e d . Though B r a v e r m a n ' s a n a l y s i s r e c e i v e d w i d e s p r e a d c r i t i c i s m ( f o r example , f o r h i s i n a d e q u a t e c o n c e p t i o n o f c l a s s s t r u g g l e (Lamphere , 1985) , h i s d e f i n i t i o n of s k i l l ( G a s k e l l , 1986) and h i s l a c k of c o n c e r n f o r the i m p a c t o f gender and e t h n i c i t y on the l a b o u r p r o c e s s (Gannage, 1 986) ) , i t was s u c c e s s f u l i n r e k i n d l i n g i n t e r e s t i n the n a t u r e o f t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s and deba te a round the c o n c e p t s o f s k i l l and d e s k i l l i n g . C r i t i c i s m o f the book p r o v e d c o n s t r u c t i v e as s o c i a l s c i e n t i s t s f i l l e d gaps i n h i s a n a l y s i s , d e l v i n g i n t o h i d d e n r e s i s t a n c e on the shop f l o o r , and gender and e t h n i c d i v i s i o n s o f l a b o u r . The c o l l e c t i o n o f p a p e r s e d i t e d i n the Z i m b a l i s t (1979) book , f o r e x a m p l e , i s a d i r e c t r e sponse t o B r a v e r m a n ' s p l e a f o r a r e t u r n t o the w o r k p l a c e as a p r i m a r y f o c u s o f a n a l y s i s . R e s e a r c h i n the c o l l e c t i o n i n c l u d e s the p r o l e t a r i a n i z a t i o n of c l e r i c a l work , r e s i s t a n c e i n t h o s e f a c t o r i e s whose p r i n c i p a l w o r k f o r c e a r e women and e t h n i c m i n o r i t i e s , and the e f f e c t s of t e c h n o l o g y on the l a b o u r p r o c e s s . 2.3 Approaches to the labour process in the 1980s The economic c r i s i s o f t h e e a r l y 1980s r e - f u e l e d i n t e r e s t i n t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s . Some of t h i s work i s c o n c e r n e d w i t h the dynamic be tween t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s and 18 c h a n g i n g norms o f c o n s u m p t i o n . T h i s i s a s t e p f o r w a r d from the work of Braverman who o n l y i m p l i c i t l y d e a l s w i t h c h a n g i n g c o n s u m p t i o n i n the s h i f t from c r a f t p r o d u c t i o n t o mass p r o d u c t i o n , and i t s c o r o l l a r y mass c o n s u m p t i o n . T h i s i m p l i c i t t r e a t m e n t r e s t r i c t s h i s t h e o r y from a d d r e s s i n g t h e i m p a c t s o f c h a n g i n g c o n s u m p t i o n norms on the l a b o u r p r o c e s s (Peck and L l o y d , 1987) . Marx h i m s e l f a s s e r t e d the i n t r a c t a b l e r e l a t i o n between p r o d u c t i o n and c o n s u m p t i o n : P r o d u c t i o n m e d i a t e s c o n s u m p t i o n ; i t c r e a t e s the l a t t e r ' s m a t e r i a l ; w i t h o u t i t , c o n s u m p t i o n wou ld l a c k an o b j e c t . But c o n s u m p t i o n a l s o m e d i a t e s p r o d u c t i o n , i n t h a t i t a l o n e c r e a t e s f o r the p r o d u c t s t h e s u b j e c t f o r whom they a r e p r o d u c t s . . . c o n s u m p t i o n c r e a t e s the m o t i v e f o r p r o d u c t i o n ; i t a l s o c r e a t e s the o b j e c t w h i c h i s a c t i v e i n p r o d u c t i o n as i t s d e t e r m i n a n t a im ( M a r x , 1976, p . 9 1 ) . The F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n i s t s , f o l l o w i n g a M a r x i s t a p p r o a c h t o change and c r i s i s i n c a p i t a l i s m , i n t e g r a t e c o n s u m p t i o n i n t o t h e i r t h e o r y of the l a b o u r p r o c e s s ( A g l i e t t a , 1979; L i p i e t z , 1987) . C a p i t a l i s m , t hey a r g u e , may be d e f i n e d by the commodity r e l a t i o n and the wage r e l a t i o n . The former i s the exchange of money on the marke t f o r a m a n u f a c t u r e d p r o d u c t , w h i l e the wage r e l a t i o n m a n i f e s t s i t s e l f when the owners o f the means o f p r o d u c t i o n p u r c h a s e l a b o u r power from w o r k e r s . In v e r y s i m p l e t e r m s , r e p r o d u c t i o n of c a p i t a l i s t sys tem r e q u i r e s t h a t c a p i t a l i s t s s u p p l y goods t o the marke t w h i c h a r e s o l d f o r a p r o f i t and t h a t each worker p u r c h a s e s the means r e q u i r e d t o r e p r o d u c e h e r / h i m s e l f f o r the nex t w o r k i n g 19 day. Working c l a s s ' consumption i s a lynch-pin in the schema: unless labour purchases the commodities c a p i t a l i s t s supply to the market, the system collapses. In A g l i e t t a ' s (1979) terms, a " . . . s o c i a l norm of working class consumption" i s required so that commodities are sold on the market (p. 152). An example of the way production and consumption are linked i s the way mass production techniques on the shop floor require patterns of mass consumption at the market. The reg u l a t i o n i s t s have developed the term 'regime of accumulation' to refer to the process whereby commodity and wage re l a t i o n s are reproduced for an extended period of time. Although the theory integrates consumption and production, the engine for change, at least in the current c r i s i s , seems to rest more firmly in the realm of production. Consumption, on the other hand, complements production through a regulatory mechanism which either "...coerces or persuades private agents to conform to the regime" ( L i p i e t z , 1987, p. 32). An example of a regulatory mechanism or i n s t i t u t i o n a l form which emerged to encourage mass consumption in Canada and the United States was the development of credit, finance to f a c i l i t a t e homeownership. Subsequently, homeowners became increasingly involved in purchasing standardised appliances and automobiles, complementing mass production methods in the factories (Belec, et al, 1987). Credit finance i s one of many 20 i n s t i t u t i o n a l forms w h i c h l i n k p r o d u c t i o n and c o n s u m p t i o n and a r e known c o l l e c t i v e l y as the 'mode of r e g u l a t i o n ' . C r i s i s , an i n t e g r a l component o f the r e g u l a t i o n t h e o r y , o c c u r s when the reg ime o f a c c u m u l a t i o n and the mode o f r e g u l a t i o n become out o f s y n c . F o r e x a m p l e , d u r i n g the 1930s , improved p r o d u c t i v i t y i n f a c t o r i e s u s i n g T a y l o r i s t methods of p r o d u c t i o n r e s u l t e d i n a c r i s i s o f o v e r p r o d u c t i o n because consumers d i d not have the d i s p o s a b l e income t o p u r c h a s e the c o m m o d i t i e s . A l t e r n a t i v e l y , as i s the ca se i n the, c u r r e n t c r i s i s , the v e r y b a s i s o f the regime of a c c u m u l a t i o n migh t have r e a c h e d i t s l i m i t s . A c c o r d i n g t o A g l i e t t a , t h e r eg ime o f a c c u m u l a t i o n dominant from the l a t e 1930s and 1940s u n t i l the 1960s , known as F o r d i s m , has r eached i t s l i m i t . F o r d i s m i s c h a r a c t e r i s e d by mass p r o d u c t i o n , economies o f s c a l e , m a c h i n e r y d e d i c a t e d t o s i n g l e t a s k s , a s s e m b l y l i n e s , s i m p l i f i e d work , s t a n d a r d i s e d d e s i g n s , and mass c o n s u m p t i o n . A c c o r d i n g t o the r e g u l a t i o n i s t s , t h e major g o a l o f F o r d i s m was t o reduce the p o r o s i t y o f t h e w o r k , t h a t i s t o r educe gaps i n the w o r k i n g day such as r e p a i r work , the t i m e was t ed i n h a n d l i n g g o o d s , i m b a l a n c e s on the a s s e m b l y l i n e , and r e s t s due t o f a t i g u e . Y e t t h e r e a r e l i m i t s on t h e e x t e n t t o w h i c h p o r o s i t y c o u l d be a v o i d e d w i t h i n the c o n f i n e s o f F o r d i s m . The r i g i d s t r u c t u r e o f mass p r o d u c t i o n under F o r d i s m impeded the o v e r a l l e f f i c i e n c y due t o i m b a l a n c e s on the a s sembly l i n e between 21 the m u l t i t u d e o f s p e c i f i c work s t a t i o n s w h i c h p r e v e n t e d the ma in tenance o f a c o n t i n u o u s f l o w o f p r o d u c t i o n and h i g h p r o d u c t i v i t y l e v e l s . H i g h r a t e s o f a b s e n t e e i s m and t empora ry s i c k n e s s e s , and poor q u a l i t y c o n t r o l due t o the i n t e n s i t y o f work on the a s s e m b l y l i n e , added f u r t h e r b a r r i e r s t o a c c u m u l a t i o n under F o r d i s m . These ' p r o b l e m s ' may i n f a c t be e v i d e n c e o f h i d d e n r e s i s t a n c e t o the monotony of work on t h e shop f l o o r o f mass p r o d u c t i o n f a c t o r i e s . A. f i n a l c o n t r a d i c t i o n i s t h a t t h e a s sembly l i n e t ends t o u n i f y w o r k e r s i n a f a c t o r y . By the 1970s, low p r o d u c t i v i t y l e v e l s and i n c r e a s e d f o r e i g n c o m p e t i t i o n were j e o p a r d i s i n g the s t a b l e wage r e l a t i o n c a p i t a l , and l a b o r had e n j o y e d s i n c e t h e 1940s ( L i p i e t z , 1986; 1987) . A c c o r d i n g t o the r e g u l a t i o n i s t s , i f a new reg ime of a c c u m u l a t i o n does not emerge t o overcome t h e c r i s i s , the c a p i t a l i s t sy s t em i s i n danger o f c o l l a p s i n g . The c r i s i s w h i c h began i n t h e l a t e 1960s h a s , however , been a v e r t e d w i t h the i n t r o d u c t i o n o f a new regime o f a c c u m u l a t i o n : n e o - F o r d i s m ( A g l i e t t a , 1 9 7 9 ) . The key c o n t r a d i c t i o n s o f F o r d i s m a re ' s o l v e d ' w i t h i n n e o - F o r d i s m by f l e x i b i l i t y , the h a l l m a r k o f t he new r e g i m e . T h i s i s a c h i e v e d t h r o u g h s h o r t p r o d u c t i o n r u n s , work teams, r e c o n s t i t u t e d work , f l e x i b l e m a c h i n e r y and t h e manufac tu re o f u n s t a n d a r d i s e d p r o d u c t s . W h i l e t h e r e g u l a t i o n i s t s have f o c u s s e d on the changes i n p r o d u c t i o n , o t h e r i n t e g r a l e l e m e n t s of the new reg ime a r e t h e m a i n t e n a n c e o f c l o s e c o n t a c t s w i t h s u b c o n t r a c t o r s and r e s t r i c t i n g i n v e n t o r i e s t o a minimum a t the f a c t o r y t o a v o i d t y i n g up c a p i t a l u n n e c e s s a r i l y (Ho lmes , 1 9 8 7 a ) . The f l e x i b l e use o f l a b o u r i s a f u r t h e r - c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f the new r e g i m e : i n some i n d u s t r i e s have t u r n e d i n c r e a s i n g l y t o a c o n t i n g e n t l a b o u r f o r c e , t h a t i s t hey a r e drawn i n t o employment w h i l e demand i s s t r o n g and a r e l a i d - o f f when demand f a l t e r s ( B e e c h y , 1985; C h r i s t o p h e r s o n , 1987) . 1 P o s t - F o r d i s t 2 c o n s u m p t i o n p a t t e r n s a r e gea red t o h e t e r o g e n e o u s m a r k e t s where demand i s u s u a l l y s h o r t l i v e d and consumers a r e c o n c e r n e d w i t h q u a l i t y r a t h e r than p r i c e . A c o m p a r i s o n between t h e two r e g i m e s , F o r d i s m and p o s t - F o r d i s m , a d a p t e d from Holmes (1987a) i s p r e s e n t e d i n t a b l e form ( T a b l e I ) . Recen t c l a i m s t h a t the r e c o m p o s i t i o n and a u t o m a t i o n of work w i l l improve c o n d i t i o n s f o r l a b o u r i n t h e new 1 However , t h i s l a b o u r segment i s not a t o t a l l y new phenomenon i n c a p i t a l i s t s o c i e t y and may o n l y be i n c r e a s i n g i n impor t ance i n t h e new reg ime o f p r o d u c t i o n ( P o l l e r t , 1 9 8 8 ) . 2 The t e rm p o s t - F o r d i s m i s p r e f e r r e d over n e o - F o r d i s m w h i c h r e f e r s o n l y t o changes on the shop f l o o r w h i l e i g n o r i n g o t h e r changes i n the o r g a n i s a t i o n o f p r o d u c t i o n . P o s t - F o r d i s m , on the o t h e r h a n d , r e f e r s t o b o t h . 23 Table 1 C h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of p r o d u c t i o n under Fordism and post-Fordism F o r d i s t P o s t F o r d i s t M arkets S t a b l e d e s i g n . Mass markets. C o m p e t i t i o n based on p r i c e , s t y l e and m a r k e t i n g . D i v e r s i t y of d e s i g n . S m a l l markets. Q u a l i t y and i n n o v a t i o n i m p o r t a n t . P r o d u c t i o n p r o c e s s D e d i c a t e d m a c h i n e r y . R e p e t i t i v e t a s k s . D e s k i l l e d l a b o u r f o r c e . Long p r o d u c t i o n r u n s . F l e x i b l e and programmable machinery. V a r i e d t a s k s R e c o n s t i t u t i o n of s k i l l . B a t c h p r o d u c t i o n . S o c i a l o r g a n i s a t i o n o f p r o d u c t i o n B u f f e r s t o c k s of i n v e n t o r y . Arms l e n g t h r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h s u p p l i e r . Q u a l i t y c o n t r o l t h r o u g h s t r i c t s u p e r v i s i o n . J u s t - i n - t i m e d e l i v e r y o f components. C l o s e r r e l a t i o n s h i p w i t h s u p p l i e r , l o n g term c o n t r a c t s . Workers r e s p o n s i b l e f o r q u a l i t y c o n t r o l . I n d u s t r y and S t r u c t u r e L a r g e s c a l e p r o d u c t i o n . Fewer p r o d u c e r s . V e r t i c a l i n t e g r a t i o n . S m a l l s c a l e p r o d u c t i o n . S u r v i v a l o f medium s i z e d p r o d u c e r s . P o s s i b l e d i s i n t e g r a t i o n . L o c a t i o n and geography E x t e n s i v e p r o d u c t i o n . S h i f t t o low wage c o u n t r i e s p o s s i b l e . C o n c e n t r a t e d p r o d u c t i o n . Remains i n OECD due t o t e c h n i c a l advantage. Source: Holmes, 1986. regime are vehemently r e j e c t e d by A g l i e t t a (1979): "The combination of these two l i n e s of development [automation 24 and r e c o m p o s i t i o n ] has u n l e a s h e d the most shame le s s p ropaganda about the l i b e r a t i o n of man (sic) and work" (p . 1 2 2 ) . R a t h e r , he a r g u e s , the i n t r o d u c t i o n o f au tomated mach ines l e a d s t o t h e l a y i n g - o f f o f w o r k e r s , t he c o n t i n u e d d e s k i l l i n g o f the w o r k f o r c e , and t h e c e n t r a l i s a t i o n of p r o d u c t i o n . A l t h o u g h new t e c h n i c i a n s a r e h i r e d t o o p e r a t e the programmable m a c h i n e s , t hey a re not t he ones d e s k i l l e d or l a i d - o f f by t h e s e m a c h i n e s . In r e a l i t y , r e g u l a t i o n i s t s a r g u e , t he r e c o m p o s i t i o n of t a s k s means t h a t e v e r y employee can do any of the s i m p l i f i e d j o b s i n t h e f a c t o r y . Slowdowns due t o a b s e n t e e i s m a re t h e r e b y p r e v e n t e d , s i n c e w o r k e r s a r e c a p a b l e o f a l l the d e s k i l l e d work on t h e shop f l o o r . F l e x i b l e l a b o u r does n o t , t h e r e f o r e , a u t o m a t i c a l l y t r a n s l a t e t o a s k i l l e d w o r k f o r c e . F o r t h e r e g u l a t i o n i s t s , i n s p i t e o f new p r o d u c t i o n me thods , t he p r o c e s s e s i d e n t i f i e d by Braverman i n t h e F o r d i s t r eg ime o f a c c u m u l a t i o n p e r s i s t and the new r e g i m e , n e o - F o r d i s m , i s s i m p l y an e x t e n s i o n o f t he o l d . A b r i e f d i s c u s s i o n of c a s e s t u d i e s on the i m p l e m e n t a t i o n o f r o b o t i c s , work teams and q u a l i t y c i r c l e s w h i c h f o l l o w s , s u p p o r t s A g l i e t t a ' s c o n c l u s i o n s . Robotics: F o r M o r r i s - S u z u k i ( 1 9 8 4 ) , t he most i m p o r t a n t deve lopment i n r e c e n t y e a r s on t h e shop f l o o r i s the use of programmable m a c h i n e r y . In most c a s e s , the s o f t w a r e i n s t r u c t s a r o b o t t o do mundane t a s k s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c o f a mass p r o d u c t i o n a s s e m b l y l i n e . In 25 some f a c t o r i e s , however, the software is sophisticated enough to guide the machines through d i f f i c u l t work and changing external circumstances. These robots are thus " . . . p a r t i c u l a r l y applicable to the production of small batches of varied products" (Morris-Suzuki,. 1984, p. 113), and to the regime of post-Fordism. Her concern i s the way in which the software allows c a p i t a l to dispossess a worker's knowledge and transform i t into a commodity. Confirming Braverman's theory> Morris-Suzuki and A g l i e t t a concede that although most of the work in the factory is degraded or d e s k i l l e d , a few s k i l l s are created in the form of programmers. Weighted against workers on the shop f l o o r , the e f f e c t s of the new techniques are uneven. Work Teams'. In the new regime, the assembly l i n e has been replaced by the work team system. Although "...the continuous flow of production along an assembly l i n e is maintained, the assembly l i n e i s now divided into d i s t i n c t work spaces, each supplied with i t s own stock of components and t o o l s " (Coriot, 1980, p. 35). Whereas before one i n d i v i d u a l performed a single operation, now a group of workers i s involved in manufacturing a number of d i f f e r e n t components. From management's perspective the advantages of the new system are impressive in that many of the problems associated with the assembly l i n e are overcome. In p a r t i c u l a r , with the recomposition of tasks and fewer work stations, work stoppages are less frequent 26 and f l e x i b i l i t y i s i m p r o v e d , two f a c t o r s a l w a y s p r o b l e m a t i c a l i n the mass p r o d u c t i o n a s s e m b l y l i n e . C o r i o t (1980) i s , however , s k e p t i c a l t h a t l a b o u r can i n any way c h a l l e n g e management 's c o n t r o l o f p r o d u c t i o n . Once the sys tem of work teams i s i n p l a c e c o n t r o l s i m p l y s h i f t s from the l e v e l of t he i n d i v i d u a l t o t h e l e v e l o f t h e g r o u p . Work teams a r e s u b j e c t t o d e a d l i n e s i n the same way i n d i v i d u a l w o r k e r s were f o r c e d t o m a i n t a i n a c e r t a i n pace on the a s sembly l i n e . C o r i o t ' s t h e s i s i s t h a t the a s semb ly l i n e has been r e s t r u c t u r e d r a t h e r t h a t r e p l a c e d , r u l i n g out the p o s s i b i l i t y o f t he r e c r e a t i o n of c r a f t s o r " . . . a s o c i a l l y r e c o g n i s e d q u a l i f i c a t i o n " ( p . 4 1 ) . S h i f t i n g the bounds of c o n t r o l , managers have s o l v e d t h e c o n t r a d i c t i o n s o f the mass p r o d u c t i o n a s s e m b l y l i n e w i t h o u t r e l i n q u i s h i n g any c o n t r o l o f p r o d u c t i o n . Quality Circles: Q u a l i t y c i r c l e s and q u a l i t y o f w o r k l i f e schemes a r e e l emen t s o f t h e new reg ime and a r e c o n s i d e r e d an i m p o r t a n t p a r t o f i m p r o v i n g t h e w o r k i n g l i f e o f l a b o u r . The o b j e c t i v e o f t h e schemes i s t o make work more i n t e r e s t i n g and f u l f i l l i n g t h r o u g h w o r k e r i n p u t and p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the s t r u c t u r e o f t h e p r o d u c t i o n p r o c e s s and the work e n v i r o n m e n t . T h e r e i s e v i d e n c e t h a t t he p l a n s have had some s u c c e s s ; s i n c e t h e i n t r o d u c t i o n of the q u a l i t y o f w o r k l i f e sys tem a t an a u t o m o b i l e p l a n t i n O n t a r i o , wage and o t h e r p l a n t r e l a t e d s e t t l e m e n t s have been c o n c l u d e d i n r e c o r d t ime ( R i n e h a r t , 1 9 8 3 ) . However , 27 there are also negative aspects to these schemes. In q u a l i t y c i r c l e s , some workers learn how to solve production problems as managers would - including the retrenchment, i f necessary, of their fellow employees. Rinehart (1983) refers to t h i s process as the modification of worker consciousness to support r a t i o n a l i s a t i o n s and cutbacks even i f the result i s the laying off of workers. Though the working l i f e of labour may have improved in the factory which forms the basis of Rinehart's study, the schemes have become tools for management to divide workers on the shop f l o o r . Workers in th i s factory also discovered that managers were s e l e c t i v e in their acceptance of suggestions. Problems which dealt with increasing output and quality, or decreasing costs were always implemented. However, when the c i r c l e s suggested spending money to improve working conditions or the factory environment, the ideas were frequently ignored or shelved by management. Thus according Rinehart (1983), even the more promising aspects of f l e x i b l e production are wrought into tools for c a p i t a l i s t s to control labour. 2.4 Massachusetts Institute of Technology School The v i e w t h a t the e m e r g i n g t e c h n i q u e s c o n t i n u e t o d e s k i l l and a r e a t o o l f o r c o n t r o l l i n g l a b o u r i s n o t , however , h e l d by a l l s t u d e n t s o f t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s i n c a p i t a l i s m . I n the U n i t e d S t a t e s , a g roup of e c o n o m i s t s a t the M a s s a c h u s e t t s I n s t i t u t e o f T e c h n o l o g y (MIT) have examined r e c e n t changes i n m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n o l o g y and t h e i r i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r f u t u r e g r o w t h . C h a r l e s S a b e l and M i c h a e l P i o r e , the most p r o l i f i c and w e l l known a c a d e m i c s from the s c h o o l , a r e c o n c e r n e d s p e c i f i c a l l y w i t h e x p l o r i n g p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r renewed p r o s p e r i t y i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s economy f o l l o w i n g the c r i s i s o f the 1970s ( P i o r e and S a b e l , 1 9 8 4 ) . C r i s i s , a c c o r d i n g t o P i o r e and S a b e l , t a k e s two d i s t i n c t f o r m s : the f i r s t i s a c r i s i s o f r e g u l a t i o n w h i c h o c c u r s when the p r o d u c t i o n o f goods i s no t s u c c e s s f u l l y i n t e g r a t e d w i t h t h e norms of c o n s u m p t i o n . R e g u l a t o r y i n s t i t u t i o n s e x i s t t o " . . . c o n n e c t p r o d u c t i o n and c o n s u m p t i o n . . . " i n the same way t h e mode of r e g u l a t i o n e n s u r e s the c o n s u m p t i o n o f c o m m o d i t i e s i n the F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n t h e o r y ( P i o r e and S a b e l , 1984, p . 4 ) . An ' i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e ' , the s e c o n d c r i s i s , o c c u r s a f t e r t h e f i r s t and r e f e r s t o a j u n c t u r e i n w h i c h a c h o i c e must be made between e x t e n d i n g the r e g u l a t o r y i n s t i t u t i o n s w i t h o u t a l t e r i n g the p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s i n any s i g n i f i c a n t way, or i m p l e m e n t i n g a d i f f e r e n t t e c h n o l o g y i n p r o d u c t i o n . 29 Se t o f f by a number o f exogenous s h o c k s such as e s c a l a t i n g energy p r i c e s , the c r i s i s o f t he 1970s was e n t r e n c h e d w i t h r i g i d wage s t r u c t u r e s and s t a b l e employment , anathema t o the sys tem of mass p r o d u c t i o n w h i c h r e q u i r e s a " . . . r e s e r v e army of l a b o u r t o move i n and o u t o f r e g u l a r employment" ( S o l o , 1985, p . 8 3 1 ) . The s a t u r a t i o n of d o m e s t i c m a r k e t s and consumer d i s s a t i s f a c t i o n w i t h mass p roduced goods a l s o p l a y e d a v i t a l r o l e i n d i s r u p t i n g t h e l i n k s between the c o n s u m p t i o n and p r o d u c t i o n of c o m m o d i t i e s . I n r e sponse t o t h e r e g u l a t i o n c r i s i s o f a decade e a r l i e r , the U n i t e d S t a t e s i s c u r r e n t l y n e g o t i a t i n g an ' i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e ' , t h e s e c o n d o f the MIT s c h o o l ' s c r i s e s . A t t h i s d i v i d e , a c h o i c e must be made between an e x t e n s i o n o f the r e g u l a t o r y mechanisms w i t h i n e x i s t i n g mass p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n o l o g y , o r t h e i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of new t e c h n o l o g y i n p r o d u c t i o n . I f t h e c h o i c e i s t he e x t e n s i o n of the r e g u l a t o r y mechan i sms , e x i s t i n g methods of p r o d u c t i o n a r e l i k e l y t o p e r s i s t . F o r P i o r e . and S a b e l the p r e f e r r e d r o u t e i s t h e i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of a ' new ' t e c h n o l o g y w h i c h i s i n e f f e c t a r e v e r s i o n t o o l d e r c r a f t methods abandoned a t the f i r s t i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e i n t h e l a t e 19th c e n t u r y . They recommend f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n , t h e i r t e rm f o r t h e r e -e m e r g i n g c r a f t p a r a d i g m , because mass p r o d u c t i o n has had u n f o r t u n a t e consequences on the l a b o u r f o r c e . The n e w / o l d 30 t e c h n i q u e s , on the o t h e r h a n d , p r o m i s e a l i b e r a t e d and r e s k i l l e d w o r k i n g c l a s s . F l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n , i m p l y i n g c r a f t s k i l l s r a t h e r t h a n the monotony of mass p r o d u c t i o n p r o m i s e s t h a t a : . . . w o r k e r ' s i n t e l l e c t u a l p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n the work p r o c e s s i s enhanced - and h i s or her r o l e r e v i t a l i s e d . M o r e o v e r , c r a f t p r o d u c t i o n depends on s o l i d a r i t y and c o m m u n i t a r i a n i s m ( P i o r e and S a b e l , 1984, p . 2 7 8 ) . A c h o i c e must t h e r e f o r e be made between a s t r a t e g y f o r g rowth based on the c u r r e n t me thods , o r a p a t h w h i c h " . . . l e a d s baqk t o t h o s e c r a f t methods of p r o d u c t i o n l o s t ou t a t the f i r s t i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e " ( P i o r e and S a b e l , 1984, p . 6 ) . T h e i r c h o i c e o f f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n o v e r mass p r o d u c t i o n i s based on t h e work by S a b e l on the I t a l i a n i n d u s t r i a l complex o f R e g g i a - E m i l i a , i n I t a l y . I n h i s r e s e a r c h he d e s c r i b e s how farm m a c h i n e r y c o r p o r a t i o n s s u b c o n t r a c t e d p a r t o f t h e p r o d u c t i o n p r o c e s s t o s m a l l e r a r t i s a n a l f i r m s d u r i n g a p e r i o d of i n t e n s e l a b o u r m i l i t a n c y . The l a r g e compan ie s were a t t e m p t i n g t o ensu re t h a t l a b o u r would not d i s r u p t p r o d u c t i o n . S a b e l ' s v i e w i s t h a t s k i l l s were r e c o n s t i t u t e d i n the s m a l l s h o p s , l e a d i n g u l t i m a t e l y t o one o f t h e most i n n o v a t i v e m a n u f a c t u r i n g r e g i o n s o f t he w o r l d ( S o l o , 1 9 8 5 ) . 31 K a t z and S a b e l ( 1 9 8 5 ) , i n a case s t u d y c e l e b r a t i n g f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n , use the a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y t o show how the f l a t t e n i n g of demand, i n c r e a s e d f o r e i g n c o m p e t i t i o n and the o i l c r i s i s l e d m a n u f a c t u r e r s t o abandon l o n g p r o d u c t i o n r u n s , s t a n d a r d i z e d p r o d u c t s and a s i m p l i f i e d l a b o u r p r o c e s s . L a r g e c o r p o r a t i o n s have a d o p t e d a s t r a t e g y o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g s p e c i a l i s e d c a r s f o r s m a l l e r m a r k e t s . Ano the r i m p o r t a n t component o f t h e emerg ing sys t em i s an i n c r e a s i n g c o n c e r n w i t h q u a l i t y and worke r p r i d e w i t h the manufac tu r ed v e h i c l e . On t h e shop f l o o r , t h i s has t r a n s l a t e d t o t h e f l e x i b l e dep loymen t o f l a b o u r , t he s e t t i n g up of work teams, the b r o a d e n i n g o f j o b c l a s s i f i c a t i o n s and the r e s k i l l i n g of the w o r k f o r c e . S u r f i c i a l l y , the F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n and MIT a p p r o a c h e s have a g r e a t d e a l i n common: b o t h s c h o o l s use t h e c o n c e p t o f a r e g u l a t i o n c r i s i s , b o t h a r e c o n c e r n e d w i t h t h e l i n k s between c o n s u m p t i o n and p r o d u c t i o n a n d , though t h e y use d i f f e r e n t l a b e l s , t he two s c h o o l s see the s o l u t i o n t o t h e c r i s i s i n new s t r u c t u r e s of work on the shop f l o o r . D e s p i t e the s i m i l a r i t i e s , however , t h e r e a r e i m p o r t a n t d i f f e r e n c e s i n the approaches o f w r i t e r s l i k e A g l i e t t a (1979) and P i o r e and S a b l e ( 1 9 8 4 ) . F i r s t , the MIT s c h o o l i n t r o d u c e s the c o n c e p t of ' i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e ' w h i c h o c c u r s a f t e r the r e g u l a t i o n c r i s i s . I t i s a p e r i o d when a c h o i c e must be made between mass p r o d u c t i o n and f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n o r c r a f t p r o d u c t i o n . The d i v i d e , a l t h o u g h 32 l i n k e d t o t h e c r i s i s , i s a j u n c t u r e w h i c h p r o v i d e s the " b a c k d r o p or frame t o subsequen t r e g u l a t i o n c r i s e s " ( P i o r e and S a b e l , 1984, p . 5 ) . The i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e c o n c e p t w h i c h i n t r o d u c e s an e l emen t o f i n d i v i d u a l c h o i c e w i t h i n t he c a p i t a l i s t s y s t e m , i s a b s e n t i n the F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n t h e o r y . I n s t e a d , t h e y a r g u e , c a p i t a l i s t s must e i t h e r r e s t r u c t u r e p r o d u c t i o n on the shop f l o o r o r r i s k the c o l l a p s e o f t he s y s t e m ; t h e r e i s t hus no q u e s t i o n o f c h o o s i n g between two c o m p e t i n g methods of p r o d u c t i o n . A second d i f f e r e n c e i s t h a t w h i l e P i o r e and S a b e l equa te the e m e r g i n g work t e c h n i q u e s w i t h c r a f t methods abandoned a t the f i r s t i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e , t he F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n i s t s r e g a r d t h e new work s t r u c t u r e s as un ique t o c a p i t a l i s m . C o n c e i v a b l y , i n a f u t u r e i n d u s t r i a l d i v i d e , t he c h o i c e f o r t he MIT s c h o o l w i l l a g a i n be one between c r a f t and mass methods of p r o d u c t i o n . F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n t h e o r y i s more f l e x i b l e i n t h a t t hey e x p e c t new and un ique p r o d u c t i v e a r r a n g e m e n t s t o emerge a f t e r each c r i s i s ( L i p i e t z , 1 9 8 7 ) . F i n a l l y , and of i m p o r t a n c e t o the e m p i r i c a l m a t e r i a l i n the c h a p t e r s w h i c h f o l l o w , t he MIT s c h o o l p r e d i c t t h a t w i t h f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n w o r k e r s e n j o y a f u l f i l l i n g and m e a n i n g f u l work l i f e w i t h i n the c a p i t a l i s t s y s t e m . The r e g u l a t i o n i s t s a rgue t h a t u n t i l t h e sys tem c o l l a p s e s , l a b o u r w i l l neve r be l i b e r a t e d . 2.5 C r i t i c i s m s of current formulations 33 The MIT school's concept of i n d u s t r i a l divide in which a choice i s made between two competing methods of production has recently received c r i t i c i s m . F i r s t , i t i s not clear that emerging production methods are simply the return of older c r a f t s k i l l s l o st at the l a s t i n d u s t r i a l divide (Gertler, 1988). The recombination of s k i l l s and the replacement of the assembly l i n e in some f a c t o r i e s represents the restructuring of work processes, rather than the re-introduction of archaic methods of production (Coriot, 1980). Second, the concept of 'choice' at an i n d u s t r i a l divide i s rather problematical. Is t h i s choice a c o l l e c t i v e decision made by governments, c a p i t a l i s t s and workers or w i l l each group see the way suggested by Piore and Sabel in d i v i d u a l l y ? How do these groups come to a consensus on which production method to choose and w i l l there be any debate? (Solo, 1985). These issues are not addressed in any depth by Piore and Sabel (1984) and are indicative of the vagueness of the MIT approach. Other academics from various i n s t i t u t e s of technology around the United States have demonstrated empirically the weaknesses of Piore and Sabel's work. Shaiken et al (1986) are c r i t i c a l of the prediction that f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n has the poten t i a l to r e s k i l l labour and 34 a l l e v i a t e monotonous w o r k . T h e i r f i n d i n g s sugges t t h a t the p r i m a r y r e a s o n f l e x i b l e work teams and programmable m a c h i n e r y a r e i n t r o d u c e d , i s t o c e n t r a l i s e and c o n t r o l p r o d u c t i o n . Manager s do not want t o l e a v e a n y t h i n g t o c h a n c e : I b e l i e v e i n h a v i n g c o n t r o l ove r e v e r y programme and e v e r y p a r t because t h e r e ' s a l o t i n v o l v e d . . . W e b a s i c a l l y have q u a l i t y c o n t r o l o f the p r o g r a m m i n g . . . Y o u d o n ' t want eve rybody d o i n g t h e i r own t h i n g (Manager , c i t e d i n S h a i k e n et al, 1986, p . 1 7 3 ) . N u m e r i c a l l y c o n t r o l l e d equipment a l s o d e s k i l l s w o r k e r s who have a c e r t a i n amount o f power on the shop f l o o r : " M a c h i n i s t s t e n d t o be p r i m a d o n n a s . T h i s i s one of t h e m o t i v a t i o n s f o r b u y i n g NC [ n u m e r i c a l l y c o n t r o l l e d ] e q u i p m e n t . I t r e d u c e s our dependence on s k i l l e d l a b o u r " (ibid, p . 1 7 4 ) . F i n a l l y , the p r e s s u r e t o i n c r e a s e t u r n a r o u n d t i m e t o meet s m a l l e r marke t s f o r c e s l a b o u r t o work a t an ex t r eme p a c e . Thus more i m p o r t a n t t han the t h e o r e t i c a l p r o b l e m s i n P i o r e and S a b e l ' s (1984) a n a l y s i s , i s t h a t t h e i r c o n c l u s i o n s a r e not s u p p o r t e d by r e s e a r c h on the shop f l o o r . In a number of m a n u f a c t u r i n g s e c t o r s t h e r e i s o n l y s c a n t e v i d e n c e t o sugges t that , w o r k e r s a r e g a i n i n g s k i l l s o r t h a t management and l a b o u r a r e now coming t o some s o r t o f e q u i t a b l e r e l a t i o n s h i p i n the f a c t o r y e n v i r o n m e n t . 35 In a r e c e n t paper G e r t l e r (1988) e x t e n d s the c r i t i c i s m o f f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n a r g u i n g t h a t t h e r e a r e a number o f m i s c o n c e p t i o n s c o n c e r n i n g t h e i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of new t e c h n i q u e s . F o r example , c o m p u t e r i s e d m a c h i n e r y i s v u l n e r a b l e t o b reakdowns , d e f e a t i n g the g o a l o f f a s t e r t u r n a r o u n d t i m e s . S o p h i s t i c a t e d m a c h i n e s a r e a l s o v e r y c o s t l y , and many s m a l l f i r m s a r e u n a b l e t o r a i s e the n e c e s s a r y c a p i t a l . G e r t l e r i s t hus r a t h e r s k e p t i c a l t h a t the new t e c h n i q u e s a r e v e r y p e r v a s i v e and s u g g e s t s t h a t the l i t e r a t u r e has t ended t o g e n e r a l i s e f rom a few c a s e s t u d i e s t o a l l m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n d u s t r i e s . B o t h the r e g u l a t i o n i s t s and t h e MIT s c h o o l a r e g u i l t y o f t h i s c r i t i c i s m . They a r e a l s o g u i l t y o f o v e r s t a t i n g t h e i r p o s i t i o n s ; f o r e x a m p l e , a t one e x t r e m e , t h e fo rmer a rgue t h a t most work i s s t i l l degraded and q u a l i t y o f work l i f e schemes a r e implemented t o dupe l a b o u r , w h i l e a t t he o t h e r e x t r e m e , the MIT s c h o o l c o n t e n d t h a t s k i l l s a r e recomposed and w o r k i n g l i f e i s i m p r o v e d . In a s u r v e y o f 29 f i r m s i n O n t a r i o , however , M a n s e l l (1978) shows t h a t b o t h have some t r u t h : t h e r e a number o f s u c c e s s f u l schemes w h i c h have a m e l i o r a t e d work l i f e and t h e r e a r e many schemes w h i c h s e r v e t o f u r t h e r c e n t r a l i s e c o n t r o l . I t seems t h a t the e f f e c t s o f the new t e c h n i q u e s w i l l be d i f f e r e n t a c r o s s m a n u f a c t u r i n g s e c t o r s and w i t h o u t more d e t a i l e d s t u d y , g e n e r a l i s a t i o n s a r e p r o b l e m a t i c . 36 F i n a l l y , t h e r e a r e c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n the p o l i t i c a l c o n s e q u e n c e s o f f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n . C l o s e r t i e s between p a r e n t f i r m and s u b c o n t r a c t o r p l a c e s l a b o u r i n a p o t e n t i a l l y s t r o n g p o s i t i o n v i s - a - v i s c a p i t a l , as any d e l a y s due t o l a b o u r m i l i t a n c y can be d i s a s t r o u s . I t i s p o s s i b l e t h a t t h e Japanese a r e aware o f t h i s c o n t r a d i c t i o n as t h e i r Kanban sys t em r e f e r s t o b o t h the j u s t - i n - t i m e ( j i t ) s y s t e m o f d e l i v e r y and t h e p r o v i s i o n o f a b e t t e r w o r k i n g e n v i r o n m e n t f o r l a b o u r t o m i n i m i s e the t h r e a t o f s t r i k e s ( S u g i m o r i et al, 1 9 7 7 ) . S t a n d a r d i s e d t a s k s a re m e c h a n i s e d t o m i n i m i s e monotonous work on the shop f l o o r and w o r k e r s a r e e n c o u r a g e d t o t a k e p a r t i n p r o d u c t i o n r e l a t e d d e c i s i o n s . In some N o r t h A m e r i c a n c o r p o r a t i o n s , t he i d e a s o f j i t a r e embraced w h i l e t he q u a l i t y o f work l i f e i s c o n s i d e r e d l e s s i m p o r t a n t . The p o t e n t i a l f o r c o n f l i c t i s t h e r e f o r e s t i l l p r e s e n t i n the new p r o d u c t i o n r e g i m e . 2.6 In d u s t r i a l Geography and the New Regime I n d u s t r i a l g e o g r a p h e r s have been c o n c e r n e d w i t h the l i n k s between t h e n a t u r e of p r o d u c t i o n i n the f a c t o r y and l o c a t i o n ( S c h r o e n b e r g e r , 1 9 8 7 ) . Many of the w r i t e r s have not s p e c i f i c a l l y s e t t h e i r r e s e a r c h w i t h i n the c o n t e x t o f a new r eg ime of a c c u m u l a t i o n or new m a n u f a c t u r i n g 37 t e c h n i q u e s on the shop f l o o r . N e v e r t h e l e s s , g e o g r a p h e r s e x p l o r i n g the l o c a t i o n a l i m p l i c a t i o n s f o r f i r m s i m p l e m e n t i n g new work methods have used t h e t h e o r e t i c a l p r e m i s e s d e v e l o p e d i n r e s e a r c h on t h e l i n k s between p r o d u c t i o n and l o c a t i o n . An e x e g e s i s o f some of t he se t h e o r e t i c a l p r e m i s e s may be found i n A l l e n S c o t t ' s s e r i e s of pape r s on L o s A n g e l e s (1983a ; 1983b; 1 9 8 4 ) . S c o t t examines how i n t e r n a l and e x t e r n a l l i n k a g e s w i t h i n and between f i r m s a r e r e l a t e d t o t h e i r l o c a t i o n i n an urban a r e a . I n t e r n a l l i n k a g e s w h i c h e x i s t w i t h i n the f i r m r e f e r t o the o r g a n i s a t i o n of the l a b o u r p r o c e s s . E x t e r n a l l i n k a g e s a r e the f l o w of m a t e r i a l be tween f i r m s and f a c e -t o - f a c e c o n t a c t s o v e r b u s i n e s s d e a l s o r c o n t r a c t s . L i n k a g e c o s t s a r e h i g h where t h e y . . . a r e s m a l l s c a l e , u n s t a n d a r d i s e d , and u n s t a b l e as t o s p a t i a l p a t t e r n s . . . B y c o n t r a s t , l i n k a g e c o s t s w i l l be low i n u n i t t e rms where l i n k a g e s i n v o l v e the movement o f l a r g e q u a n t i t i e s o f p r o d u c t s , a r e h i g h l y s t a n d a r d i s e d and a r e s t a b l e w i t h r e s p e c t t o s p a t i a l p a t t e r n ( S c o t t , 1983a , p . 2 4 1 ) . S c o t t a r g u e s t h a t f i r m s w i t h h i g h l i n k a g e c o s t s t e n d t o be l a b o u r i n t e n s i v e , v e r t i c a l l y d i s i n t e g r a t e d , and a r e s p a t i a l l y c o n c e n t r a t e d t o r educe h i g h l i n k a g e c o s t s . On the o t h e r h a n d , c a p i t a l i n t e n s i t y and v e r t i c a l i n t e g r a t i o n a r e a s s o c i a t e d w i t h companies w i t h low l i n k a g e c o s t s . In s p a t i a l t e r m s , l o w e r l i n k a g e c o s t s a l l o w f i r m s t o d e c e n t r a l i s e p r o d u c t i o n t o a r e a s where l a n d and l a b o u r a r e l e s s e x p e n s i v e . W i t h r a t h e r s l i m e m p i r i c a l e v i d e n c e from 38 t h e c l o t h i n g and e l e c t r o n i c s i n d u s t r i e s , S c o t t l i n k s the l a b o u r p r o c e s s i n the f i r m and i t s e x t e r n a l r e l a t i o n s t o s p a t i a l p a t t e r n s o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n Los A n g e l e s ( S c o t t , 1983b; 1 9 8 4 ) . As men t ioned a b o v e , he does not d i s c u s s h i s t h e o r y s p e c i f i c a l l y w i t h r e f e r e n c e to the new reg ime of p r o d u c t i o n . The c o n c e p t s o f e x t e r n a l and i n t e r n a l l i n k a g e s a r e u s e f u l , however , i n t h a t t h e y have been a p p l i e d by o t h e r g e o g r a p h e r s e x p l o r i n g the s p a t i a l i m p l i c a t i o n s o f i n d u s t r i e s i m p l e m e n t i n g f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s . A t t h e n a t i o n a l and i n t e r n a t i o n a l s c a l e , the l i n k s be tween p r o d u c t i o n and l o c a t i o n i s seen p r i m a r i l y i n terms o f t he s t a n d a r d i s a t i o n of p r o d u c t s , the s i m p l i f i c a t i o n o f t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s and t h e r e l o c a t i o n o f p r o d u c t i o n t o a r e a s where wages a r e l o w e r . The work of F r o b e l et al (1980) on the r e l o c a t i o n of the German c l o t h i n g and t e x t i l e i n d u s t r i e s t o the T h i r d W o r l d i s o f t h i s g e n r e . The movement o f s i m p l i f i e d manufac tu re t o the T h i r d W o r l d , t h e y a r g u e , i s a l o n g t e rm and p e r s i s t e n t t r e n d w h i c h i s g l o b a l l y m a n i f e s t e d i n the New I n t e r n a t i o n a l D i v i s i o n o f L a b o u r ( N I D L ) . The i d e a o f a l o n g t e rm s h i f t o f i n v e s t m e n t t o the T h i r d W o r l d , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n m a n u f a c t u r i n g , h a s , however , r e c e n t l y come under c l o s e s c r u t i n y ( L i p i e t z , 1986; G o r d o n , 1988) . G o r d o n , f o r e x a m p l e , a r g u e s t h a t NIDL i s no t as e x t e n s i v e or as p e r s i s t e n t as F r o b e l et al a s s e r t . A t a n o t h e r l e v e l , 39 c r i t i c i s m of NIDL has come f rom w r i t e r s who have d e m o n s t r a t e d t h a t the i m p e t u s t o r e l o c a t e p r o d u c t i o n i s o f t e n p o l i t i c a l l y m o t i v a t e d r a t h e r t h a n s i m p l y a q u e s t f o r cheaper l a b o u r . A few o f t h e s e a rguments a r e d i s c u s s e d b e l o w . In h i s s t u d y o f t he midwes t a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y C l a r k (1986) d i s c u s s e s how p o l i t i c a l p r o b l e m s were r e s p o n s i b l e f o r the r e l o c a t i o n of p r o d u c t i o n . He a r g u e s t h a t t he d e c l i n e of the r e g i o n i s due t o t h e ' o s s i f i c a t i o n ' of c l a s s r e l a t i o n s w h i c h i n h i b i t c o r p o r a t i o n s from r e s t r u c t u r i n g the i n d u s t r y in situ. The r e l o c a t i o n of p r o d u c t i o n t o p e r i p h e r a l a r e a s o f t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s , C l a r k a r g u e s , i s a p o l i t i c a l r a t h e r t h a n s i m p l y an economic p r o b l e m . S i m i l a r l y , M i t t e r ' s (1985) s t u d y on the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y s u p p o r t s a p o l i t i c a l - e c o n o m i c o v e r a s t r i c t l y economic e x p l a n a t i o n i n a c c o u n t i n g f o r the o r g a n i s a t i o n of the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i n I t a l y . She a r g u e s t h a t a p p a r e l companies i n I t a l y d e c e n t r a l i s e d p r o d u c t i o n t o s m a l l e r f a c t o r i e s o r t o d e t a c h e d w o r k s h o p s t o b reak the s t r e n g t h of the I t a l i a n u n i o n movement. The s m a l l e r shops a r e no t u s u a l l y u n i o n i s e d and c o l l e c t i v e a c t i o n i s p r o b l e m a t i c i n so c o m p e t i t i v e an i n d u s t r y . In a c a s e s tudy of t h e e l e c t r o n i c s i n d u s t r y , Cho (1985) a r g u e s t h a t the p o l i t i c a l m o t i v e s f o r r e l o c a t i o n a l s o a p p l y a t the i n t e r n a t i o n a l s c a l e . She a rgues t h a t 40 the p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r m i l i t a n c y a r e much h i g h e r i n a f a c t o r y i n S o u t h K o r e a where w o r k e r s h a i l from the same c l a s s b a c k g r o u n d and l i v e i n the same n e i g h b o u r h o o d s . In a f a c t o r y i n S i l i c o n V a l l e y , however , due p r i m a r i l y t o t h e d i f f e r e n t c l a s s b a c k g r o u n d s of the w o r k e r s , the p o t e n t i a l f o r r e s i s t a n c e was v e r y l o w . C h o ' s c o n c l u s i o n i s t h a t w o r k e r r e s i s t a n c e i s more of a c o n c e r n than h i g h e r wages and t h a t t he h i g h e r p o t e n t i a l f o r worke r m o b i l i s a t i o n i n S o u t h K o r e a i s f o r c i n g companies t o r e l o c a t e back t o t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s . A l l o f the paper s d i s c u s s e d he re add a p o l i t i c a l d i m e n s i o n i n t h e i r a n a l y s i s o f the r e l o c a t i o n o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g , and C h o ' s e v i d e n c e r a i s e s s e r i o u s d o u b t s c o n c e r n i n g F r o b e l et al 1 s argument of a l o n g t e rm t r e n d o f t he f l i g h t o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g t o the T h i r d W o r l d . W h i l e the r e g u l a t i o n i s t and MIT s c h o o l s have f o c u s s e d on t h e e f f e c t s o f the new t e c h n i q u e s on l a b o u r , g e o g r a p h e r s have been c o n c e r n e d w i t h how the l o c a t i o n o f i n d u s t r y has been a f f e c t e d by d i f f e r e n t work s t r u c t u r e s w i t h i n f i r m s , and by •new s u b c o n t r a c t i n g and s u p p l y r e l a t i o n s between f i r m s (Holmes , 1986, S t o r p e r and C h r i s t o p h e r s o n , 1987 ) . Holmes (1987a) uses the t o o l s o f t h e F r e n c h r e g u l a t i o n i s t s t o p r e d i c t t h e c h a n g i n g s p a t i a l o r g a n i s a t i o n of the a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y i n Canada and the , U n i t e d S t a t e s . P r i o r t o the 1970s , the a u t o i n d u s t r y r e p r e s e n t e d the e p i t o m e of mass p r o d u c t i o n : m a n u f a c t u r e o c c u r r e d on an a s s e m b l y l i n e , work was r e p e t i t i v e and 41 s i m p l i f i e d , l a r g e b u f f e r s t o c k s were h e l d and companies worked w i t h numerous s u b c o n t r a c t o r s . D e c l i n i n g p r o d u c t i v i t y l e v e l s due t o c o n t r a d i c t i o n s i n the sy s t em of p r o d u c t i o n and c o m p e t i t i o n from o f f s h o r e m a n u f a c t u r e r s l e d t o a c r i s i s i n t h e i n d u s t r y . G e n e r a l M o t o r s and F o r d s u r v i v e d t h r o u g h r e s t r u c t u r i n g and the i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s . Huge i n v e s t m e n t s were made i n programmable m a c h i n e r y , * q u a l i t y c i r c l e s were i n t r o d u c e d , t a s k s were r ecomposed , c a r s were t a r g e t e d to s p e c i a l i s e d m a r k e t s , fewer s u b c o n t r a c t o r s were u s e d , and l o w e r i n v e n t o r i e s were m a i n t a i n e d . These new t e c h n i q u e s have l e d t o the s p a t i a l a g g l o m e r a t i o n of i n d u s t r i e s f o r a t l e a s t two r e a s o n s : f i r s t , t h e r e c o m p o s i t i o n of t a s k s r e q u i r i n g s k i l l e d l a b o u r i n h i b i t s c o r p o r a t i o n s from r e l o c a t i n g t o the T h i r d W o r l d i n s e a r c h of cheape r l a b o u r . S e c o n d , p a r e n t f i r m s e n c o u r a g e s u b c o n t r a c t o r s t o i n v e s t i n new t e c h n o l o g y t o i n c r e a s e t h e q u a l i t y o f p r o d u c t i o n , w h i c h has s t r e n g t h e n e d t i e s between the two c o m p a n i e s . In C a n a d a , Holmes e x p e c t s t he a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y t o remain i n O n t a r i o , w h i l e i n the U . S . , t h e mid -wes t i s t he l i k e l y s i t e f o r f i r m s t o l o c a t e . C o n t r a r y t o C l a r k ' s (1986) argument d i s c u s s e d a b o v e , f l e x i b l e t e c h n i q u e s have thus p e r m i t t e d companies t o make in situ changes i n r e s p o n s e t o the c r i s i s w i t h o u t h a v i n g t o r e l o c a t e . H o l m e s ' p r e d i c t i o n of t h e r e t u r n of t he a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y t o the midwest i s s u p p o r t e d by the work o f E s t a l l 42 (1985) on the . j u s t - i n - t i m e sys t em of c o n t r o l l i n g t h e i n p u t s and o u t p u t s i n G e n e r a l M o t o r s ' p r o d u c t i o n p l a n t s . The o p p o s i t e o f t h i s , ' j u s t - i n - c a s e ' , i n v o l v e s m a i n t a i n i n g l a r g e i n v e n t o r i e s o f s t o c k s f o r f u t u r e p r o d u c t i o n w h i c h i s v e r y c o s t l y ( S a y e r , 1985) . B e f o r e i m p l e m e n t i n g j i t , E s t a l l e s t i m a t e s t h a t a t any one t i m e G e n e r a l M o t o r s had up t o n i n e b i l l i o n d o l l a r s t i e d up i n i n v e n t o r i e s . The l o c a t i o n a l i m p l i c a t i o n s of j i t l e n d s u p p o r t t o H o l m e s ' argument o f i n c r e a s i n g s p a t i a l c o n c e n t r a t i o n because t h e sys t em i s most s u c c e s s f u l when the s u p p l i e r and p a r e n t f i r m a re i n c l o s e p r o x i m i t y . Not s u r p r i s i n g l y E s t a l l p r e d i c t s the r e c o n c e n t r a t i o n of t h e a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y t o t h e m i d w e s t . Towards the end o f h i s paper E s t a l l c o n c u r s w i t h G e r t l e r (1988) on the p o l i t i c a l i m p l i c a t i o n s o f j i t : i n the new sys tem d i s r u p t i o n s due t o l a b o u r s t o p p a g e s can be v e r y c o s t l y f o r the f i r m and l a b o u r has a p o t e n t i a l l y s t r o n g e r b a r g a i n i n g p o s i t i o n . S c h r o e n b e r g e r (1987) a p p r o a c h e s changes i n m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n the new reg ime r a t h e r d i f f e r e n t l y i n h e r r e s e a r c h on the a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y . Her a im i s t o s t r e s s c o m p e t i t i o n as an e x p l a n a t o r y v a r i a b l e i n the i n c r e a s e d use o f f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s . I m p l e m e n t a t i o n o f n e w . t e c h n o l o g y i n v o l v e s the p l a y i n g o f f of one a d v a n t a g e 43 over another and considerable tension exists between the ce n t r a l i s i n g tendencies of the new techniques, and the advantages of further extending the spa t i a l d i v i s i o n of labour within the [automobile] industry. The eventual outcome depends on the extent to which competitive advantages offered by the new methods compensate for the loss of a certain amount of spa t i a l f l e x i b i l i t y (Schroenberger, 1987, p. 200). Though many companies w i l l continue to produce through mass production methods, others have found competitive advantages with faster turnaround time, closer t i e s with suppliers and customers and investment in programmable machinery. Echoing the conclusions of Holmes (1987a) and E s t a l l (1985), she argues that proximity to suppliers and the market w i l l lead to s p a t i a l concentration. It i s important to note that Schroenberger does not argue that her analysis i s automatically applicable to any other manufacturing industry. Instead, the extent to which a firm adopts f l e x i b l e techniques of production depends on the competitive structure of the industry, i t s i n d u s t r i a l organisation and the organisation of work on the shop f l o o r . Some industries are thus not l i k e l y to change from mass production methods. This i s an important insight because although most of the work on f l e x i b l e accumulation i s based on the automobile industry, the phenomenon i s often regarded as ubiquitous across a l l industries (however, see Holmes, 1987b). Further, not a l l firms 44 within a manufacturing sector may be able to become f l e x i b l e in their work structure due to, for example, a lack of c a p i t a l (see chapter s i x ) . In the clothing industry, manufacturers located in Third World countries have since the 1950s undercut manufacturers in the United States and Canada with cheaper imports. Their competitive advantage is a function of low wages; even in this decade, the daily wage rate of a worker in South Korea i s equivalent to the hourly rate of a worker in North America or the United Kingdom. Most of the clothing imported i s standardised to take advantage of cheap labour through s i m p l i f i e d work (Mitter, 1985; Waldinger, 1986). Moreover, the long lead time associated with importing clothing i s not important where markets are r e l a t i v e l y stable and styles are invariable. Competition i s based on price in the manufacture of these mass production goods, giving importers an edge over l o c a l manufacturers. On the other hand, in the unstandardised or fashion clothing market where styles and colours change frequently, competition i s based not so much on p r i c e but on 'reading' consumer demand at the right time (Waldinger, 1986). Rapid turnaround i s v i t a l because a p a r t i c u l a r style may become outdated before the manufacturer has been able to produce the clothing. In t h i s market, which i s arguably replacing the mass, standardised markets of Fordism, domestic manufacturers have the upper hand in 45 t h a t t h e y a r e a b l e t o r e spond t o new f a s h i o n s and d e l i v e r a p p a r e l t o r e t a i l e r s i n a m a t t e r of weeks (Hoffman, 1985; M i t t e r , 1 9 8 5 ) . F o r e i g n based m a n u f a c t u r e r s , however , a r e d i s a d v a n t a g e d i n t h a t w i t h a t y p i c a l d e l i v e r y t ime of s i x months , t h e y a r e g e n e r a l l y u n a b l e t o compete i n f a s h i o n c l o t h i n g . D o m e s t i c m a n u f a c t u r e r s have been a b l e t o f u r t h e r improve t h e i r t u r n a r o u n d t i m e w i t h programmable m a c h i n e r y , an i m p o r t a n t component o f t he new reg ime of a c c u m u l a t i o n . The mach ines have p e r m i t t e d m a n u f a c t u r e r s t o d e s i g n new s t y l e s , change f a s h i o n l i n e s and r e s p o n d q u i c k l y t o demand ( G i b b s , 1987 ) . The i m p l i c a t i o n s o f the c o n s u m p t i o n o f u n s t a n d a r d i s e d and f a s h i o n goods i n the new reg ime a r e s i g n i f i c a n t f o r the geography o f c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n . M a n u f a c t u r e r s c l o s e r t o the marke t a r e a b l e m o n i t o r changes i n s t y l e and t h e r e f o r e have a c o m p e t i t i v e edge o v e r f i r m s l o c a t e d o f f s h o r e . T h i s argument has l e d G i b b s (1987) and Hoffman (1985) t o r e p o r t t h a t some c l o t h i n g companies a r e r e t u r n i n g t o the U n i t e d Kingdom and o t h e r OECD c o u n t r i e s . Thus f a s h i o n a p p a r e l m a n u f a c t u r e r s w i t h equipment t o i n c r e a s e f l e x i b i l i t y and t u r n a r o u n d have a c o m p e t i t i v e advan tage o v e r o f f s h o r e p r o d u c e r s where marke t s a re more v o l a t i l e . M a n u f a c t u r e r s o f s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g t e n d t o be i n a d i f f e r e n t s i t u a t i o n t h a n a r e the p r o d u c e r s o f f a s h i o n 46 goods; on the whole they continue to be undercut by cheaper imported goods due to a f a i r l y constant demand and few design changes. Hoffman (1985), however, argues that the lower labour content associated with computerised cutting and sewing has allowed domestic manufacturers to compete even in the standardised clothing market. Hoffman estimates that for CAD and CAM to be a useful investment, the p a r t i c u l a r firm must s e l l more than 50 m i l l i o n d o l l a r s worth of clothing a year. The majority of clothing companies in the industry are r e l a t i v e l y small and only the largest firms have purchased computerised machinery. His estimate that f i f t y per cent of the garments produced in the United States are made with CAD or CAM i s thus very sur p r i s i n g . Competitiveness may now be dependent on size and scale economies, something which has never been the case in the apparel industry (Hoffman, 1985). The s p a t i a l implications of f l e x i b l e production are s t i l l , however, less clear in the c l o t h i n g sector than they appear to be in the auto industry. In the l a t t e r , most observers tend to concur that the industry i s becoming concentrated due to changes in the labour process, and closer t i e s with subcontractors and markets ( E s t a l l , 1 985; Holmes, 1987a; Schroenberger, 1987). On the other hand, a number of papers based on the I t a l i a n clothing industry suggest that s p a t i a l deconcentration p e r s i s t s in this manufacturing sector. In his study of 47 the I t a l i a n a p p a r e l i n d u s t r y , M u r r a y (1983) p r o v i d e s e v i d e n c e t h a t t he number o f d e c e n t r a l i s e d f a c t o r i e s i s i n c r e a s i n g as l a r g e companies s u b c o n t r a c t more o f t h e i r p r o d u c t i o n . B e n e t t o n , a w i d e l y c i t e d example , c u r r e n t l y s u b c o n t r a c t s t h e s t a n d a r d i s e d e l e m e n t s of p r o d u c t i o n t o o v e r 10 ,000 w o r k e r s w h i l e o n l y d i r e c t l y e m p l o y i n g 1,500 d e s i g n e r s and c u t t e r s i n i t s own f a c t o r i e s w h i c h a r e "made up o f s m a l l p l a n t s o f 50-60 e m p l o y e e s , where the u n i o n i s a b s e n t o r impeded" ( M u r r a y , 1983, p . 9 1 ) . The r e a s o n why the compan ie s a r e so d e c e n t r a l i s e d i s o b v i o u s : " B e n e t t o n t h u s h o l d s down i t s o v e r h e a d s , a v o i d s the t h a n k l e s s t a s k of manag ing a v a s t w o r k f o r c e and b e n e f i t s from the much l o w e r c o s t s o f the s m a l l s u b c o n t r a c t o r s " ( B u x t o n , 1983, c i t e d i n M i t t e r , 1985, p . 4 8 ) . Through s u b c o n t r a c t i n g t h e y manage t o s t a y a t arms l e n g t h from any l a b o u r r e s i s t a n c e . In S c h r o e n b e r g e r ' s (1987) t e r m s , B e n e t t o n has f a v o u r e d s p a t i a l f l e x i b i l i t y o v e r the advan tages w i t h the new t e c h n i q u e s . A number o f a u t h o r s have a r g u e d t h a t t he i n s t a b i l i t y of m a r k e t s i n the new regime of p r o d u c t i o n n e c e s s i t a t e s no t o n l y f l e x i b l e t e c h n i q u e s and m a c h i n e r y , bu t a l s o a f l e x i b l e l a b o u r f o r c e . C h r i s t o p h e r s o n ( 1 9 8 7 ) , f o r e x a m p l e , has a r g u e d t h a t i n c r e a s e s i n p a r t t i m e and t e m p o r a r y work a r e e v i d e n c e t h a t f i r m s a re a d a p t i n g t o v o l a t i l e marke t c o n d i t i o n s t h r o u g h the use of a c o n t i n g e n t l a b o u r f o r c e c o m p r i s i n g m a i n l y women and m i n o r i t i e s . In 48 t he c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y a f l e x i b l e w o r k f o r c e has a l w a y s been i m p o r t a n t and as the demand f o r more f a s h i o n a b l e . a n d l e s s s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g i n c r e a s e s , t h i s l a b o u r segment w i l l become more c e n t r a l i n c l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s . In l a b o u r s e g m e n t a t i o n t h e o r y , d i s c u s s e d i n t h e f i n a l s e c t i o n b e l o w , t h i s c o n t i n g e n t l a b o u r f o r c e forms p a r t o f the g r o w i n g s e c o n d a r y m a r k e t . 2.7 Segmented Labour Markets Labour marke t s e g m e n t a t i o n t h e o r y was d e v e l o p e d t o h e l p e x p l a i n why advances i n e d u c a t i o n a r e v a l u e d i n some employment s e c t o r s w h i l e , i n o t h e r s , t h e e f f e c t o f c e r t i f i c a t i o n o f any k i n d on s e n i o r i t y o r wages a r e n e g l i g i b l e . Edwards ( 1 9 7 9 ) , a p i o n e e r o f the t h e o r y , a r g u e d t h a t t h e r e a r e t h r e e s t r a t a i n t o w h i c h employment o p p o r t u n i t i e s s h o u l d be c a t e g o r i s e d . In the f i r s t s t r a t u m , the independen t p r i m a r y m a r k e t , employment i s s t a b l e , wages a r e h i g h , t h e r e a r e l a r g e r e t u r n s t o s e n i o r i t y and e d u c a t i o n a l e x p e r i e n c e i s u s u a l l y a c r i t e r i a f o r p r o m o t i o n . Labour i n the s u b o r d i n a t e p r i m a r y m a r k e t , t he second s t r a t u m , u s u a l l y e n j o y s u n i o n r e p r e s e n t a t i o n and f a i r l y h i g h wages, though t h e work may be monotonous and s i m p l i f i e d . F i n a l l y , work i n t h e s e c o n d a r y market i s c h a r a c t e r i s e d by low wages, low l e v e l s o f s k i l l s , the 49 absence of u n i o n s and few o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r advancement . E d u c a t i o n a l q u a l i f i c a t i o n s t e n d t o have no impact on s e n i o r i t y o r p r o m o t i o n i n the s e c o n d a r y m a r k e t . Downgraded m a n u f a c t u r i n g j o b s , s e r v i c e and d o m e s t i c work a r e most commonly a s s o c i a t e d w i t h t h i s segment (Edwards , 1 9 7 9 ) . D i v i s i o n s i n the l a b o u r marke t do n o t , however , o c c u r because some w o r k e r s a r e i n h e r e n t l y b e t t e r s u i t e d t o c e r t a i n k i n d s o f work . R a t h e r , segments a r e a f u n c t i o n of t he s t r u c t u r e of work and the n a t u r e of c o n t r o l on the shop f l o o r : The r e a s o n , f o r e x a m p l e , e d u c a t i o n and e x p e r i e n c e a r e not s i g n i f i c a n t v a r i a b l e s i n t h e s e c o n d a r y marke t i s t h a t the l a b o u r p r o c e s s i n s e c o n d a r y f i r m s i s o r g a n i s e d i n ways w h i c h m i n i m i s e e d u c a t i o n and e x p e r i e n c e ( S a s s e n - K o o b , 1980, p . 2 1 ) . The s y s t e m of c o n t r o l s e t s the b o u n d a r i e s f o r the l a b o u r marke t segment . In t h e independen t p r i m a r y m a r k e t , a b u r e a u c r a t i c sys tem of r u l e s and r e g u l a t i o n s i s the p r i n c i p a l method of c o n t r o l l i n g the pace and s t r u c t u r e o f w o r k , w h i l e i n the s u b o r d i n a t e p r i m a r y marke t c o n t r o l i s t e c h n i c a l i n t h a t the mach ines a r e se t t o r e g u l a t e the pace o f w o r k . In the s e c o n d a r y l a b o u r market s i m p l e c o n t r o l , w h i c h may be d e f i n e d as " the a r b i t r a r y power o f foremen and s u p e r v i s o r s t o d i r e c t work t o m o n i t o r 50 per fo rmance and t o d i s c i p l i n e o r r e w a r d w o r k e r s " (Edwards , 1979, p . 1 8 3 ) , i s the method whereby l a b o u r i n s e c o n d a r y f i r m s a r e c o n t r o l l e d . F o r e x a m p l e , t he a c t i o n s o f foremen a re o f t e n a r b i t r a r y , based no t on r u l e s or r e g u l a t i o n s , but on the c h a r a c t e r of t he i n d i v i d u a l . P r o m o t i o n i n the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y may be b a s e d on g e n d e r , good l o o k s , f a m i l y f r i e n d s , f a v o u r s and o t h e r s u c h i n f o r m a l r u l e s . There a r e t h u s no o b j e c t i v e s t a n d a r d s f o r p r o m o t i o n and e d u c a t i o n a l e x p e r i e n c e i s u s u a l l y i n s i g n i f i c a n t . Immigrant l a b o u r i s o f t e n f o r c e d i n t o t h e s e j o b s due t o t h e i r l a c k o f l anguage s k i l l s o r e d u c a t i o n q u a l i f i c a t i o n s n e c e s s a r y t o e n t e r the o t h e r two s egmen t s . Labour market s e g m e n t a t i o n t h e o r y f o c u s e s v e r y b r o a d l y on how the n a t u r e o f c o n t r o l d i v i d e s w o r k e r s and work i n t o v a r i o u s segments . However , t he t h e o r y i s o n l y a f ramework, and a t a more d e t a i l e d l e v e l o f e m p i r i c a l a n a l y s i s , i t i s e v i d e n t t h a t t h e manner i n w h i c h w o r k e r s become c h a n n e l e d i n t o the segments i s r a t h e r c o m p l e x . N g ' s (1986) r e s e a r c h i s a good example o f how l a b o u r marke t s a r e r e p r o d u c e d i n C a n a d i a n s o c i e t y t h r o u g h v a r i o u s s t a t e i n s t i t u t i o n s . Her argument i s t h a t t h e r e i s a p r o c e s s by w h i c h immig ran t women a r e d e f i n e d i n t o c e r t a i n l a b o u r segmen t s . I n s t i t u t i o n s s u c h as employment a s s i s t a n c e and p lacement c e n t r e s p l a y an i m p o r t a n t r o l e i n r e p r o d u c i n g t h e l a b o u r s egmen t s . E m p i r i c a l s u p p o r t f o r her c l a i m s i s drawn from r e s e a r c h on an ' o u t r e a c h ' 51 organisation, funded by the Federal government, whose objective was to: ...improve with the help of community based agencies, the employability and employment of individuals who experience d i f f i c u l t i e s competing in the labour market (Ng, 1986, p. 274). In p ractice, however, the programme reproduced and supported the segmented labour market. In the interviews with immigrant women seeking assistance, their s k i l l s were matched with employment opportunities and questions were asked concerning language s k i l l s , education and work experience. The existence of the secondary labour market, forced employees of the outreach programme to place immigrant women in .downgraded manufacturing jobs or service and domestic work. Creese's (1984) paper on the s t r a t i f i c a t i o n of the working class also points to how d i f f e r e n t i n s t i t u t i o n s play a role in creating or reproducing segmented labour markets. Though her research i s based on Chinese men in B r i t i s h Columbia around the turn of the century, i t demonstrates admirably the dynamic of the segmentation process. Chinese men were employed in the canneries, in domestic service, and in the lumber and mining industry. They were paid substantially less than white workers and were usually hired as a team rather than i n d i v i d u a l l y . The basis for discrimination, argues Creese, was their 52 lack of p o l i t i c a l and leg a l r i g h t s . Unions.reproduced the segmented labour market by not allowing the Chinese to j o i n . The di v i s i o n s between immigrant and native workers were further entrenched as the former were used to as scab labour during s t r i k e s . Thus the state, c a p i t a l i s t s and white labour a l l had a role to play in relegating the Chinese to an i n f e r i o r labour market segment. Feminist scholars are, in general, c r i t i c a l of the labour market segmentation theory because i t f a i l s to incorporate the e f f e c t s of women's experience in the home on their employment outside the home (Gannage, 1986; 1987; Lamphere, 1985; Hoel; 1982). In addition, although labour market segmentation theory deals with immigrants and women, there is very l i t t l e on immigrant women. It has been argued that t h e i r labour market position i s unique as they are exploited on the basis of cl a s s , gender and their status as immigrants. Morokvasic has argued, however, that their oppression as immigrants is most sharply f e l t and tends to neutralise the other two (gender and c l a s s ) , to mask the exploitation by (for instance) a male compatriot employer or push women to take their husband's stand whatever their own position i s in r e l a t i o n to him" (Morokvasic, 1984, p. 894). Thus since the pioneering work of Edwards, research on labour segmentation has been extended to incorporate the 53 e f f e c t s o f u n p a i d work on f o r m a l work e x p e r i e n c e s and o t h e r p l a c e s p e c i f i c i s s u e s a f f e c t i n g women and w o r k . S i n c e the l a t e 1970s, t he c o n t i n u i n g i m p o r t a n t r o l e of immig ran t l a b o u r i n the economies o f N o r t h A m e r i c a n c i t i e s has a t t r a c t e d the a t t e n t i o n of a number o f w r i t e r s . There i s g e n e r a l agreement t h a t the a b s o r p t i o n o f i m m i g r a n t s i n t o employment , w h i l e t o t a l unemployment i s i n c r e a s i n g , i s due t o the economic r e s t r u c t u r i n g i n c i t i e s l i k e Los A n g e l e s , New Y o r k , T o r o n t o and M o n t r e a l . R e s t r u c t u r i n g has l e d t o the r e p l a c e m e n t of h i g h p a y i n g m a n u f a c t u r i n g j o b s by downgraded a s sembly work and t h e emergence of a s t r o n g s e r v i c e s e c t o r ( S a s s e n - K o o b , 1 9 8 4 ) . G e n t r i f i c a t i o n and o t h e r p r o c e s s e s a f f e c t i n g t h e b u i l t e n v i r o n m e n t have a l s o p l a y e d a r o l e i n c r e a t i n g l a b o u r i n t e n s i v e work o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r i m m i g r a n t s shunned by most n a t i v e w o r k e r s . S a s s e n - K o o b ' s f i n d i n g s a r e m i r r o r e d i n L o s A n g e l e s , where the r e s t r u c t u r i n g o f t h e l o c a l economy has l e d t o a g r e a t e r r i f t between the w e a l t h y and the p o o r . T h i s income d i s p a r i t y i s r e f l e c t e d i n t h e e x i s t e n c e o f a h i g h t e c h n o l o g y s e c t o r where s k i l l s and wages a r e h i g h , and p e r i p h e r a l i s e d m a n u f a c t u r i n g f i r m s where wages a r e l o w . In t h i s l a t t e r g roup s m a l l c l o t h i n g f i r m s , food p r o c e s s i n g and e l e c t r o n i c s a s s e m b l y a r e p r o m i n e n t ( S o j a , M o r a l e s and W o l f f , 1987 ) . Thus t h e p r o c e s s o f r e s t r u c t u r i n g i n the 1980s has had major i m p a c t s on t h e s t r u c t u r e o f l a b o u r m a r k e t s and i n many 54 North American c i t i e s the secondary labour market, dominated by women and minorities, is growing rapidly. Immigrant labour did not, however, create the conditions for the emergence of downgraded manufacturing and low-paying service sector employment. Most writers have been c a r e f u l to distance themselves from th i s f u n c t i o n a l i s t type of argument and have pointed out i t s flaws (Castells and Portes, 1986). Instead, i t seems that the owners of downgraded manufacturing and service sector firms have not improved the conditions of work because of the a v a i l a b i l i t y of a large reserve of immigrant labour. If the immigrant labour did not exist and manufacturers had to depend on l o c a l labour, they may have restructured production or perhaps relocated to where labour i s less expensive (Waldinger, 1985). In the papers reviewed above, i t i s evident that the way in which immigrant workers came to be employed in the secondary labour market i s complex. The research by Creese (1984) and Ng (1986) in par t i c u l a r demonstrate how l o c a l features play a role in reproducing labour market segments. The process of segmentation i s linked to issues in the home, c o n f l i c t s within the working c l a s s , and in state i n s t i t u t i o n s . These analyses demonstrate that labour market . segmentation theory i s at best a useful framework to begin a study in a pa r t i c u l a r place. In the 55 t h i r d c h a p t e r , a more c o n t e x t u a l a n a l y s i s o f how i m m i g r a n t women a r e drawn i n t o the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i s d e v e l o p e d . 56 2.8 Conclusion Perhaps the most n o t a b l e s h o r t c o m i n g i n the l i t e r a t u r e on r e s t r u c t u r i n g and f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g i s how dependent i t has been on t h e . a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y f o r e m p i r i c a l c o n t e x t . F o r d i s m and p o s t - F o r d i s m , te rms d e s c r i b i n g the r eg imes o f a c c u m u l a t i o n , a t t e s t t o the s i g n i f i c a n c e of t h e a u t o m o b i l e i n d u s t r y i n the b u r g e o n i n g l i t e r a t u r e on f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g . T h i s p o i n t i s t r u e of the r e g u l a t i o n i s t s , the MIT s c h o o l and t h e work by g e o g r a p h e r s . There i s t h e r e f o r e an u r g e n t need t o examine the e x t e n t t o w h i c h f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g i s b e i n g a d o p t e d i n o t h e r s e c t o r s o f the economy. A r e c o g n i t i o n of the need f o r a more e x t e n s i v e e m p i r i c a l base has o n l y v e r y r e c e n t l y appea red i n the l i t e r a t u r e ( H o l m e s , 1987b; S t o r p e r , 1987; G e r t l e r , 1988) and i s u n d e r s c o r e d by d i f f e r e n t i n t e r p r e t a t i o n s over the e f f e c t new t e c h n i q u e s have on w o r k e r ' s s k i l l s . W h i l e t he r e g u l a t i o n i s t s a rgue t h a t new t e c h n i q u e s c o n t i n u e t o d e s k i l l w o r k , t he MIT s c h o o l w r i t e r s a r e o f t h e o p i n i o n t h a t f l e x i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n w i l l improve c o n d i t i o n s on the shop f l o o r . The s p a t i a l i m p l i c a t i o n s of i n d u s t r i e s i m p l e m e n t i n g f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s a r e as y e t u n c e r t a i n . However , t h e r e a r e i n d i c a t i o n s t h a t f i r m s w i l l c o n c e n t r a t e 57 c l o s e r t o m a r k e t s t o m o n i t o r changes i n c o n s u m p t i o n and w i l l l o c a t e c l o s e r t o s u b c o n t r a c t o r s due t o the j u s t - i n -t i m e d e l i v e r y of p a r t s . Holmes (1986; 1987a) , S c h r o e n b e r g e r (1987) and o t h e r s have thus p r e d i c t e d the s p a t i a l c o n c e n t r a t i o n of p r o d u c t i o n , c o n f l i c t i n g w i t h the t h e o r y o f t h e New I n t e r n a t i o n a l D i v i s i o n o f Labour w h i c h s u g g e s t s t h e c o n t i n u e d d i s p e r s a l o f p r o d u c t i o n by f i r m s i n s e a r c h o f c h e a p e r l a b o u r . In the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y , i t a p p e a r s t h a t t he p r o d u c t i o n of s t a n d a r d i s e d a p p a r e l can t a k e a d v a n t a g e o f l e s s e x p e n s i v e l a b o u r i n the T h i r d W o r l d due t o the ease w i t h w h i c h t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s can be s i m p l i f i e d . M a n u f a c t u r e r s o f f a s h i o n c l o t h i n g , on the o t h e r h a n d , a r e l i k e l y t o l o c a t e c l o s e r t o the marke t and f o r e g o t h e a t t r a c t i o n of low wages . F i n a l l y , i t was a r g u e d t h a t some f i r m s have t u r n e d t o a c o n t i n g e n t l a b o u r f o r c e t o m a i n t a i n p r o f i t a b i l i t y d u r i n g c r i s i s , r a t h e r t han i m p l e m e n t i n g new methods o r i n v e s t i n g i n f l e x i b l e equipment w h i c h i s common i n the au to i n d u s t r y . Labou r s e g m e n t a t i o n t h e o r y was t r e a t e d as a framework w i t h w h i c h t o b e g i n a more i n - d e p t h s t u d y of how i m m i g r a n t l a b o u r , i n p a r t i c u l a r , come t o be employed i n low p a y i n g m a n u f a c t u r i n g and s e r v i c e s e c t o r j o b s . The c a s e s t u d i e s d i s c u s s e d d e m o n s t r a t e how the s t a t e , the u n i o n s and t h e f a m i l y a r e p i v o t a l i n r e p r o d u c i n g segmented l a b o u r m a r k e t s . I n c h a p t e r f i v e t h i s app roach i s used t o 58 examine the p r o c e s s of, c h a n n e l i n g i m m i g r a n t women i n t o V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . 59 CHAPTER I I I H i s t o r y and C o n t e x t of C l o t h i n g M a n u f a c t u r i n g i n Vancouver 3 .1 I n t r o d u c t i o n The a i m of t h i s c h a p t e r i s t o se t t he s t a g e f o r the a n a l y s i s o f garment m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n Vancouve r i n c h a p t e r s f o u r and s i x . In the f i r s t s e c t i o n of t h i s c h a p t e r , a b r i e f h i s t o r y o f the a p p a r e l i n d u s t r y i n Vancouve r i s o u t l i n e d b e f o r e moving o n t o a d i s c u s s i o n of t he c u r r e n t c o n t e x t o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n the c i t y . T rends i n V a n c o u v e r ' s economic s t r u c t u r e , a c i t y o f t e n d e s c r i b e d as p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l , a r e examined i n r e l a t i o n t o the r e c e n t g r o w t h o f t h e garment i n d u s t r y . The o r g a n i s a t i o n of the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y and the l a b o u r p r o c e s s i n a ' t y p i c a l ' f a c t o r y w i t h o u t f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s a r e d i s c u s s e d , t o compare changes t h a t o c c u r w i t h the i m p l e m e n t a t i o n of the me thods . E m p i r i c a l l y t h i s c h a p t e r draws from o f f i c i a l s t a t i s t i c s , i n t e r v i e w s w i t h c l o t h i n g f i r m s , equipment s a l e s p e o p l e , t r a d e j o u r n a l s and s e c o n d a r y l i t e r a t u r e on the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y . 60 3.2 A b r i e f history of c l o t h i n g production in Vancouver U n t i l r e c e n t l y V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y was s m a l l i n c o m p a r i s o n t o t h e r e s t o f Canada ( F i g . 3 .1 ) and as a r e s u l t h i s t o r i c a l a c c o u n t s o f t he i n d u s t r y a r e s c a r c e . A s k e t c h y p i c t u r e o f t h e h i s t o r y o f t h i s m a n u f a c t u r i n g s e c t o r was , h o w e v e r , c o m p i l e d t h r o u g h i n t e r v i e w s w i t h a few o f the o l d e r c o m p a n i e s , newspaper a r t i c l e s and o t h e r p u b l i c a t i o n s . A p p a r e l m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n the c i t y have i n the p a s t f o c u s s e d on l o c a l m a r k e t s . I n the l a t e n i n e t e e n t h c e n t u r y , the h a n d f u l o f c l o t h i n g f i r m s o p e r a t i n g i n the c i t y m a n u f a c t u r e d o u t e r w e a r and g e a r . f o r the men and women s e e k i n g t h e i r f o r t u n e i n the K l o n d i k e . T e n t s , b a c k p a c k s , r ubbe r b o o t s , r a i n wear and warm c o a t s were made f o r t h o s e p a s s i n g t h r o u g h V a n c o u v e r (Vancouver Sun, 1 0 / 5 / 1 9 4 1 ) . A p h o t o g r a p h o f t he s t o r e f r o n t o f Jones Tent and Awning t a k e n i n 1911 i s an example o f the t y p e o f a p p a r e l m a n u f a c t u r e d ( P l a t e 1 ) . I n f a c t , the t e rm ' c l o t h i n g f i r m ' i s s o m e t h i n g o f a mi snomer , s i n c e many o f these a l s o made awnings and r e p a i r e d and c o n s t r u c t e d s a i l s f o r t he s h i p s i n what was t h e n a s m a l l p o r t town {Province, 9 / 1 1 / 1 9 7 7 ) . W i t h t h e demise o f s a i l i n g s h i p s , however , some companies t u r n e d t h e i r e x c l u s i v e a t t e n t i o n t o the o u t d o o r c l o t h i n g and workwear marke t w h i c h was r e l a t i v e l y u n a f f e c t e d by f a s h i o n s and t ended t o be s t a n d a r d i s e d . Othe r f i r m s began a form of ' i m p o r t 61 s u b s t i t u t i o n ' by s u p p l y i n g l o c a l m a r k e t s w i t h r e a d y - t o -wear c l o t h i n g p r e v i o u s l y s h i p p e d f r o m f a c t o r i e s i n c e n t r a l C a n a d a o r made i n t h e home. 112 6 0 61 62 6 3 6 4 6 5 66 67 6 8 69 7 0 71 7 2 7 3 7 4 7 5 7 6 7 7 7 B 7 9 8 0 81 8 2 8 3 8 4 Years • Employees F i g u r e 3.1 Employment i n t h e C a n a d i a n c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y S o u r c e : S t a t i s t i c s C a n a d a , 31-203 By t h e e a r l y 1 920s, t h e r e were a t l e a s t 15 r e a d y - t o -wear c l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s , 11 workwear f i r m s and o n l y 6 m a n u f a c t u r e r s o f s a i l s a n d a w n i n g s i n ' V a n c o u v e r ( S t a t i s t i c s o f I n d u s t r y i n B.C., 1 9 3 5 ) . Women's c l o t h i n g 62 f a c t o r i e s appear t o have ' t a k e n o f f f i r s t , and by 1927 t h e r e were 10 women's c l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s and o n l y one men 's a p p a r e l m a n u f a c t u r e r ( R e p o r t on the women's f a c t o r y c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y , 1 9 2 8 ) . The number of c l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s r ema ined s m a l l t h r o u g h o u t the 1930s and 1940s and i n t he se two decades t h e number o f t o t a l c l o t h i n g f a c t o r y employees i n t h e p r o v i n c e never s u r p a s s e d one t h o u s a n d compared t o o v e r 5 0 , 0 0 0 employees i n b o t h Quebec and O n t a r i o ( S t a t i s t i c s C a n a d a , 3 4 - 2 1 7 ; R e p o r t on the men 's and women's f a c t o r y c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y , 1 9 3 0 - 1 9 4 9 ) . A t t h e same t i m e , men ' s a p p a r e l p r o d u c t i o n began t o a p p r o a c h the l e v e l o f women's c l o t h i n g and by 1945 t h e r e were 14 men 's garment f a c t o r i e s e m p l o y i n g 318 w o r k e r s and 21 women's f a c t o r i e s w i t h a l m o s t 500 w o r k e r s (ibid.). I t was o n l y by the 1950s t h a t one r e p o r t e r c o u l d p r o c l a i m t h a t " B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a ' s i n f a n t n e e d l e t r a d e i s g r o w i n g i n t o a major i n d u s t r y " (Vancouver Sun, 2 0 / 5 / 5 3 ) . In the f i r s t t h r e e y e a r s o f t h e d e c a d e , a c c o r d i n g t o the c o l u m n i s t , the number o f f i r m s i n the c i t y n e a r l y d o u b l e d , i n c r e a s i n g from 39 t o 6 5 . New m a n u f a c t u r e r s were c o n s o l i d a t i n g the a l r e a d y dominan t women's f a s h i o n i n d u s t r y where c l o t h i n g i s u n s t a n d a r d i s e d due t o f r e q u e n t s t y l e c h a n g e s . The same r e p o r t e r p r e d i c t e d t h a t the i n d u s t r y was "becoming known as the ' C a l i f o r n i a o f Canada ' i n women's f a s h i o n " (ibid.). R e f l e c t i n g the t e r m i n o l o g y a s s o c i a t e d w i t h new f a s h i o n w e a r , he p r e d i c t e d t h a t "Soon the l a d i e s w i l l know what we speak about when we m e n t i o n 63 n o t h i n g c o l o u r s , c o - o r d i n a t e d c h e c k , c o n t r a c t s t r e t c h i n g , t a p e r e d p a n t s " (ibid.) By the end of the 1950s , the women's f a s h i o n i n d u s t r y had c a r v e d i t s e l f a permanent n i c h e i n the c i t y (Province, 2 5 / 5 / 1 9 5 9 ) . S i n c e t hen the p e r c e n t a g e of p r o d u c t i o n d e d i c a t e d t o women's f a s h i o n and s t y l i s h s p o r t s w e a r has i n c r e a s e d r a p i d l y ( F i g . 3 . 2 ) . P l a t e 1 S t o r e f r o n t o f ' J o n e s Tent and A w i n i n g ' t a k e n c i r c a 1911 In r e sponse t o s t i f f c o m p e t i t i o n by cheaper i m p o r t s from a number o f T h i r d W o r l d c o u n t r i e s b e g i n n i n g i n the 1960s, a number of f i r m s w h i c h had m a n u f a c t u r e d workwear t u r n e d t o s a t i s f y i n g the demand f o r camping and o t h e r 64 outdoor l e i s u r e a c t i v i t i e s . There are c u r r e n t l y a number of f i r m s s p e c i a l i s i n g i n s l e e p i n g bags, j a c k e t s made w i t h h i g h t e c h n o l o g y m a t e r i a l f o r the ve r y wet weather common i n Vancouver, and f a s h i o n s k i w e a r . o B c o 0 - |— i—T - ^ T— i — n — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — r ~ i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i r 6 0 61 6 2 6 3 64 6 5 6 6 6 7 6 8 69 7 0 71 7 2 7 3 7 4 7 5 7 6 7 7 7 8 7 9 8 0 81 8 2 8 3 8 4 Years Men's Woman's F i g u r e 3.2 Women's and men's c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n i n B r i t i s h Columbia Source: S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 31-208; 34-216; 34-217 Employment i n B r i t i s h Columbia's garment i n d u s t r y , which i s l o c a t e d o v e r w h e l m i n g l y i n Vancouver ( F i g . 3.3), 6 5 d e c l i n e d d u r i n g t h e mid 1970s r e f l e c t i n g p o o r p e r f o r m a n c e o f t h e i n d u s t r y n a t i o n a l l y ( F i g . 3 . 4 ) . M a n u f a c t u r e r s were s e v e r e l y a f f e c t e d by l e s s e x p e n s i v e i m p o r t s a n d t h e r e l o c a t i o n o f p r o d u c t i o n t o c o u n t r i e s l i k e Hong Kon g , K o r e a a nd T a i w a n . S i n c e t h e n , h o w e v e r , t h e i n d u s t r y h a s r e _emerged b o t h n a t i o n a l l y and i n V a n c o u v e r . The r e c e n t r e v i v a l o f t h e i n d u s t r y i s s u r p r i s i n g i n a c i t y o f t e n d e s c r i b e d a s p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l . 1.5 H — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — T — i — I I i i ~ i i i I 81 6 2 6 3 64 6 5 6 6 8 7 6 8 6 9 7 0 71 7 2 7 3 7 4 7 5 7 6 7 7 7 8 7 9 8 0 81 8 2 8 3 8 4 8 5 Yeora F i g u r e 3.4 E m p l o y e e s i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a ' s g a r m e n t i n d u s t r y S o u r c e : S t a t i s t i c s C a nada, 3 1 - 2 0 3 ; 31-208 66 F i g u r e 3 .3 L o c a t i o n of c l o t h i n g m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n Vancouver S o u r c e : M a n u f a c t u r e r s D i r e c t o r y of B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , 1987 67 3.3 Post-industrial Vancouver? S i n c e the l a t e 1960s , t he i m p o r t a n c e o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g employment i n many w e s t e r n c a p i t a l i s t c i t i e s r e l a t i v e t o o t h e r s e c t o r s o f the economy has been d i s a p p o i n t i n g . F o r e x a m p l e , from 1969 t o 1977 New Y o r k ' s m a n u f a c t u r i n g employment d e c l i n e d t w i c e as f a s t compared t o the d e c l i n e i n o t h e r s e c t o r s o f the economy ( S a s s e n - K o o b , 1 9 8 5 ) . In V a n c o u v e r , a l t h o u g h employment c o n t i n u e d to. expand i n t h i s s e c t o r , i t s r e l a t i v e sha re i n c r e a t i n g new j o b s has d e c l i n e d c o n s i d e r a b l y . S i n c e the 1970s most o f t he new employment o p p o r t u n i t i e s have been p r o v i d e d by the s e r v i c e and f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r s . A number o f a c a d e m i c s have a t t e m p t e d t o a c c o u n t f o r t h i s fundamen ta l economic change and an example i s L e y ' s (1980) w i d e l y c i t e d and i n f l u e n t i a l paper on l i b e r a l i d e o l o g y and V a n c o u v e r ' s p r o g r e s s towards p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l i s m . Ley u se s B e l l ' s (1976) t h e o r y of p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l s o c i e t y t o a c c o u n t f o r new deve lopmen t s i n the e c o n o m i c , p o l i t i c a l and s o c i a l s t r u c t u r e o f Vancouve r s i n c e the 1960s . S i g n i f i c a n t t o the d i s c u s s i o n he re i s the t r a n s f o r m a t i o n o f t he c i t y ' s i n d u s t r i a l employment s t r u c t u r e f rom b l u e - c o l l a r o c c u p a t i o n s and m a n u f a c t u r i n g t o p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l o c c u p a t i o n s such as d o c t o r s , p r o f e s s o r s , l a w y e r s and o t h e r w h i t e c o l l a r j o b s . A t p r e s e n t , a t l e a s t s i x t y pe r c e n t of 68 w o r k e r s i n t h e c i t y a r e employed i n w h i t e c o l l a r j o b s , a r g u a b l y r e p l a c i n g the need f o r u n s k i l l e d l a b o u r p r e e m i n e n t i n t h e i n d u s t r i a l e r a ( L e y , 1980) . More r e c e n t d a t a c o n f i r m L e y ' s p o s i t i o n on employment t r e n d s i n V a n c o u v e r . H u t t o n (1985) has d e s c r i b e d the c i t y ' s r o l e as a h i g h - o r d e r s e r v i c e c e n t r e f o r the r e s t of t he p r o v i n c e . In 1985 the s e r v i c e and f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r s c o n t i n u e d t o grow f a s t e r t han any o t h e r s e c t o r i n the c i t y . H u t t o n p r e d i c t e d t h a t t h e f u t u r e of the c i t y ' s economy l i e s i n a s t r o n g e r s e r v i c e s e c t o r and the d e v e l o p m e n t o f an i n f r a s t r u c t u r e t o s u p p o r t an i n t e r n a t i o n a l f i n a n c e c e n t r e . M a n u f a c t u r i n g , c l e a r l y on the d e c l i n e i n most o f N o r t h A m e r i c a , he a r g u e d , i s l i k e l y t o c o n t i n u e t o r e l o c a t e t o o f f s h o r e l o c a t i o n s . . N o t a b l e e x c e p t i o n s , h o w e v e r , a r e the e l e c t r o n i c s and advanced t e c h n o l o g y i n d u s t r i e s , based on i n f o r m a t i o n and t h e r e f o r e s t i l l c o m p a t i b l e w i t h V a n c o u v e r ' s t r a n s i t i o n t owards a p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l economy. What t h e n o f o t h e r m a n u f a c t u r i n g a n d , i n p a r t i c u l a r , o f t he c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y , a s e c t o r c o n s i d e r e d a r c h a i c by many e c o n o m i s t s ? S u r p r i s i n g l y , t he p r o v i n c i a l government has t a k e n a r a t h e r a c t i v e r o l e i n p r o m o t i n g and s u p p o r t i n g the a p p a r e l i n d u s t r y i n V a n c o u v e r . In c o n t r a s t t o the w i d e l y h e l d v i e w t h a t the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i s s t a g n a t i n g , t h e government sees the i n d u s t r y a c t i n g as a " . . . b u f f e r 69 a g a i n s t the p e r i l s of a boom o r b u s t economy t i e d t o a na r row economic band of r e s o u r c e i n d u s t r i e s v u l n e r a b l e t o marke t whims" {.British Columbia Enterprise, Feb 1988) . I t i s p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t e r e s t e d i n p r o m o t i n g the m a n u f a c t u r e o f f a s h i o n c l o t h i n g w h i c h has r e c e n t l y "spawned an e x c i t i n g and r a p i d l y d e v e l o p i n g i n d u s t r y t h a t i s e s t a b l i s h i n g Vancouve r as a w o r l d f a s h i o n c e n t r e " (ibid.). P r o v i n c i a l p o l i t i c i a n s have e l e v a t e d c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n a l o n g s i d e h i g h t e c h n o l o g y e l e c t r o n i c s , a e r o s p a c e and subsea i n d u s t r i e s . A c t i v e i n v o l v e m e n t has t a k e n the form o f i n t e r e s t - f r e e l o a n s t o new f i r m s , f i n a n c i a l a s s i s t a n c e i n a t t e n d i n g f a s h i o n shows a round N o r t h A m e r i c a , s u p p o r t o f home-based work ( e . g . Vancouver Sun, 3 0 / 4 / 8 8 ) and the encouragement o f f o r e i g n i n v e s t m e n t ( S e l z e r , 1987 ) . The p r o v i n c i a l g o v e r n m e n t ' s r e c e n t l a b o u r l e g i s l a t i o n , w h i c h a f f e c t s the a b i l i t y of u n i o n s t o o r g a n i s e , has a l s o p l a y e d a r o l e i n f a c i l i t a t i n g the g r o w t h o f new f i r m s . O f f i c i a l i n t e r e s t i n t h e c l o t h i n g s e c t o r i s p a r t l y a r e sponse t o i t s r e c e n t g r o w t h . Though c l o t h i n g manufac tu re forms a s m a l l p a r t o f t he t o t a l p r o v i n c i a l economy ( F i g . 3 .5 ) and of t o t a l c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n i n Canada ( F i g . 3 . 6 ) , g rowth i n employment and o u t p u t has been s p e c t a c u l a r . The most r e c e n t u n o f f i c i a l d a t a i n d i c a t e t h a t s i n c e the r e c e s s i o n o f 1 9 8 1 / 2 , employment and p r o d u c t i o n have r i s e n by 50 pe r c e n t ( S e l z e r , 1987 ) . O f f i c i a l s t a t i s t i c s , a l t h o u g h s l i g h t l y more c o n s e r v a t i v e , - i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — r 60 61 62 63 6-i 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 8-4 Ertobllohmenta Employee* F i g u r e 3.5 Garment m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a a s a p e r c e n t a g e o f t o t a l m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n t h e p r o v i n c e . S o u r c e : S t a t i s t i c s C a n a d a , 31 - 2 0 3 ; 3 1-2.08 T — ~ i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — i — r 62 63 6* 65 66 67 88 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 78 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 Yocra X e f f t a b s X amp F i g u r e 3.6 Garment p r o d u c t i o n i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a a s a p e r c e n t a g e o f t o t a l C a n a d i a n p r o d u c t i o n S o u r c e : S t a t i s t i c s C a n a d a , 31-203; 31-208 71 a r e n e v e r t h e l e s s s u r p r i s i n g f o r a t r a d i t i o n a l l y d e c l i n i n g s e c t o r ( F i g . 3 .4 and 3 . 7 ) . The l a r g e s t i n c r e a s e s by c l o t h i n g t y p e have o c c u r r e d i n women's c l o t h i n g and s p o r t s w e a r , where s t y l e changes a r e f r e q u e n t and demand i s o f t e n v o l a t i l e . By c o n t r a s t , men ' s c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n , w h i c h t end s t o be more s t a n d a r d i s e d , i s s t a g n a t i n g ( F i g . 3 . 2 ) . O the r n o t a b l e examples o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n d u s t r i e s w h i c h a r e g r o w i n g i n Canada ( see Globe and Mail, 2 / 5 / 1 9 8 8 ) and the U n i t e d S t a t e s i n t h e 1980s i n c l u d e e l e c t r o n i c s , t o y s and f o o t w e a r . The r e v i v a l o f m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n Vancouve r and o t h e r c i t i e s i n N o r t h A m e r i c a has l e d t o a r e - e v a l u a t i o n of the t h e o r y o f a new p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l e r a i n w h i c h m a n u f a c t u r i n g p l a y s o n l y a v e r y minor r o l e . More r e c e n t a c c o u n t s o f the changes i n the economies o f c i t i e s l i k e New Y o r k and Los A n g e l e s have shown t h a t the c o n t r a c t i o n of commodity p r o d u c t i o n has r e a c h e d a i t s l i m i t and m a n u f a c t u r i n g now a p p e a r s t o be r e - e m e r g i n g a f t e r the d e p r e s s i o n of t he 1970s and e a r l y 1980s . In p a r t i c u l a r , downgraded manufacturing, t h a t i s f i r m s w i t h " . . . a t i g h t l y c o n t r o l l a b l e s u p p l y o f c h e a p , t y p i c a l l y immigran t a n d / o r female l a b o u r " ( S o j a , M o r a l e s . a n d W o l f f , 1987, p . 152) i s a r a p i d l y g r o w i n g phenomenon i n c i t i e s such as L o s A n g e l e s and New Y o r k . G a r m e n t s , e l e c t r o n i c s , and foo twea r a r e examples o f i n d u s t r i e s f a l l i n g under t h i s c a t e g o r y ( M a z u r , 1979; S a s s e n - K o o b , 1985; S o j a , M o r a l e s 72 and W o l f f , 1 9 8 7 ) . A m o d i f i c a t i o n of the p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l t h e o r y t h e r e f o r e seems n e c e s s a r y : the t h e o r y has c a p t u r e d o n l y one p a r t o f . r e c e n t s h i f t s i n the employment s t r u c t u r e o f N o r t h A m e r i c a c i t i e s , viz., a r i s e i n the number o f h i g h e r p a i d w h i t e c o l l a r j o b s . However , the t h e o r y has f a i l e d t o a c c o u n t f o r an i n c r e a s e i n the i m p o r t a n c e o f downgraded m a n u f a c t u r i n g employment w h i c h o f t e n demands a f l e x i b l e l a b o u r f o r c e who a re h i r e d o r f i r e d d e p e n d i n g on economic c o n d i t i o n s . The combined r e s u l t o f t he se two p r o c e s s e s o f i s a p o l a r i s e d urban economy, w i t h l a r g e p r i m a r y and s e c o n d a r y l a b o u r marke t segments , w h i l e u n i o n i s e d and w e l l p a i d b l u e c o l l a r work ( p a r t o f t h e s u b o r d i n a t e p r i m a r y m a r k e t ) , i s d e c l i n i n g . In the c a s e o f V a n c o u v e r , i f t he c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y c o n t i n u e s t o grow as i t has s i n c e the b e g i n n i n g of t he decade , a b i p o l a r employment s t r u c t u r e seems more l i k e l y than a p o s t -i n d u s t r i a l o n e . 7 3 60 F i g u r e 3 .7 C l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s i n B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a S o u r c e : S t a t i s t i c s C a n a d a , 31-208 3 . 4 The O r g a n i s a t i o n of Pr o d u c t i o n and the Labour Process i n the C l o t h i n g I n d u s t r y I t i s r a r e t o f i n d an i d e n t i c a l l y s t r u c t u r e d l a b o u r p r o c e s s i n two f a c t o r i e s i n the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y ( C o y l e , 74 1 9 8 2 ) . M i n o r d i f f e r e n c e s such as the l a y - o u t o f t he shop f l o o r a r e o f t e n a f u n c t i o n o f a manage r ' s whim, t h o u g h s t r u c t u r a l d i f f e r e n c e s ( e . g . the t y p e of equipment and the d i v i s i o n o f l a b o u r ) a r e u s u a l l y due t o the p r o d u c t b e i n g m a n u f a c t u r e d . In the s u b s e c t i o n s w h i c h f o l l o w , t he g e n e r a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of t h e c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y ( s e c t i o n 3 . 4 . 1 ) , and the l a b o u r p r o c e s s i n a t y p i c a l ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' f i r m a re d e s c r i b e d ( s e c t i o n 3 . 4 . 2 ) , d r a w i n g on m a t e r i a l g a t h e r e d from i n t e r v i e w s w i t h a number o f f a c t o r i e s i n V a n c o u v e r , as w e l l as s econda ry l i t e r a t u r e on t h e garment i n d u s t r y . The c h a r a c t e r s t i c s o f a ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' f i r m a r e t hen c o n t r a s t e d w i t h t hose o f a 'mode rn ' f i r m t h a t has implemented f l e x i b l e p r o d u c t i o n t e c h n i q u e s ( s e c t i o n 3 . 4 . 3 ) . In t h e s e l a s t two s e c t i o n s , we w i l l p r o c e e d c h r o n o l o g i c a l l y t h r o u g h each s t e p of t he p r o d u c t i o n p r o c e s s . D i f f e r e n c e s i n the manufac tu re o f s t a n d a r d i s e d v e r s u s u n s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g w i l l a l s o be h i g h l i g h t e d . 3.4.1 The organisation of production in the clothing industry I n t e n s e c o m p e t i t i o n and low p r o f i t s a r e c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s o f t he c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y , due p r i m a r i l y t o ease of e n t r y ( R a i n n i e , 1 9 8 4 ) . S a s s e n - K o o b (1985) e s t i m a t e d t h a t i n the U n i t e d S t a t e s one can s e t up a v i a b l e c l o t h i n g f i r m w i t h $ 3 0 0 , 0 0 0 , a f i g u r e f a r be low the 75 norm f o r o t h e r m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n d u s t r i e s . I n Canada , an i n v e s t o r from Hong Kong s e t up a v e r y c o m p e t i t i v e f a c t o r y f o r a round $500 ,000 (Equity, J u l y / A u g u s t , 1 9 8 8 ) . Once e s t a b l i s h e d , wages a r e t h e g r e a t e s t c o n c e r n f o r owners o f c l o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s ; t h i s i s a f a c t o r of t he h i g h l a b o u r c o n t e n t i n p r o d u c t i o n , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n p a t t e r n m a k i n g , g r a d i n g , m a r k i n g and c u t t i n g . Sewing and o t h e r m a c h i n i n g work a l s o t e n d t o be l a b o u r i n t e n s i v e as the v a r i e d n a t u r e of o p e r a t i o n s and t h e s u p p l e n e s s o f the c l o t h has p r e v e n t e d the m e c h a n i s a t i o n of t h e s e t a s k s . C o y l e (1982) a rgues t h a t t h e a v a i l a b i l i t y o f a cheap female l a b o u r f o r c e has a l s o p l a y e d a r o l e i n i n h i b i t i n g the deve lopment of machines t o r e p l a c e l a b o u r . A t the same t i m e , however , w i t h v e r y low p r o f i t m a r g i n s , 1 many f i r m s canno t a f f o r d new e q u i p m e n t . I n an i n d u s t r y where p r o f i t s a r e low and wages a r e the l a r g e s t e x p e n s e , payment schemes such as p i e c e r a t e s , w h i c h d e c r e a s e wages and i n c r e a s e p r o d u c t i v i t y , a r e common. P i e c e r a t e s a r e e s s e n t i a l l y an i n c e n t i v e scheme: the f a s t e r t he o p e r a t o r w o r k s , the h i g h e r the wage. i n r e a l i t y , however , o p e r a t o r s u s u a l l y ea rn l e s s on p i e c e r a t e s as i t i s u s u a l l y t i g h t l y m o n i t o r e d , and may be d e c r e a s e d when managers f e e l w o r k e r s a r e e a r n i n g t o o much, o r i f t hey want t o i n c r e a s e the pace of p r o d u c t i o n 1 P r o f i t m a r g i n s i n t h e C a n a d i a n c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y a r e t y p i c a l l y a r o u n d 3 p e r c e n t (Gannage, 1986) . 76 ( A r n o p o l o u s , 1979) . O p e r a t o r s work h a r d e r under t h e p i e c e r a t e s y s t e m , o f t e n c o m p e t i n g w i t h each o t h e r o v e r the number o f p i e c e s they can c o m p l e t e i n a day (Westwood, 1 9 8 4 ) . The c o n t r a d i c t i o n i s t h a t i f t h e y work t o o h a r d and e a r n t o o much money, the p i e c e r a t e i s l o w e r e d . In some f a c t o r i e s the pace of work has r e s u l t e d i n i n j u r i e s on the shop f l o o r , as w e l l as more l o n g - t e r m i l l n e s s e s due t o . s i t t i n g , t he pace of work , and b e i n g e x p o s e d t o v a r i o u s c h e m i c a l s and dus t (Wortman, 1980) . I t i s e s t i m a t e d t h a t one i n f i v e women i n the garment i n d u s t r y i s i n j u r e d on the j o b (Montreal Gazette, 2 8 / 4 / 1 9 8 7 ) . T h e r e a r e a l s o f r e q u e n t r e p o r t s of ' u n e x p l a i n a b l e ' s p e l l s o f f a i n t i n g and o t h e r p r o b l e m s on the shop f l o o r (Montreal Gazette, 1 2 / 3 / 1 9 8 7 ; 4 / 4 / 1 9 8 7 ) . In Vancouve r u n i o n s and t h e p u b l i c were o u t r a g e d a t the mushrooming of swea t shops a few y e a r s ago (Vancouver Sun, 2 6 / 7 / 1 9 8 5 ; Province, 2 5 / 7 / 1 9 8 5 ; 2 5 / 8 / 1 9 8 5 ; Toronto Star, 9 / 3 / 1 9 8 6 ) . Some f i r m s t u r n t o homeworking ( t h a t i s h i r i n g women who work a t home), and s u b c o n t r a c t i n g t o improve p r o f i t a b i l i t y and t o remain c o m p e t i t i v e i n the c u t - t h r o a t i n d u s t r y . Women who sew a t home a b s o r b e x p e n s e s s u c h as the c o s t o f power and m a c h i n e r y . F u r t h e r , i n the U . S . a t l e a s t , many homeworkers a r e i l l e g a l i m m i g r a n t s ; t h e i r i n s e c u r e s t a t u s a l l o w s m a n u f a c t u r e r s t o pay wages w h i c h a r e below the l e g a l minimum and t a x e s and b e n e f i t s a r e not p a r t of t h e i r wage (L ips ig -Mumme, 1987) . 77 The experience of men and women on the shop floor of most cl o t h i n g f a c t o r i e s i s not, however, the same. A gender d i v i s i o n of labour exists and some jobs are male dominated, while other tasks are defined as 'women's' work (Coyle, 1982). Men are usually cutters and pressers, work which i s highly s k i l l e d and remunerated, while women are operators or f i n i s h e r s , low paying and less s k i l l e d work (Coyle, 1982; Westwood, 1984). 2 The tasks carried out by men are also not as vulnerable to wage schemes or other methods which increase productivity as men generally have greater control over the pace of work. The reproduction of a gender d i v i s i o n of labour occurs through various mechanisms on the shop floor and outside the factory. Women are r e s t r i c t e d from the highly s k i l l e d and paid jobs because of the ideology that their work l i f e must be interrupted to ra i s e a family (Gannage, 1986). According to Coyle (1982), men protect their work by re c r u i t i n g and tr a i n i n g new workers informally, and within their own gender. Domestic factors a r t i c u l a t e with work l i f e to define women's work in other ways too. Since women may learn to sew at home, management fe e l that they should sew 2 Women's work i s not r e a l l y u n s k i l l e d . Although not recognised on the shop f l o o r , their s k i l l i s based on "...a great deal of hand/eye co-ordination, dexterity, and, above a l l , speed" (Lamphere, 1979, p. 271). 78 i n t he f a c t o r y t oo ( A n t h i a s , 1983; a l s o see c h a p t e r 6 ) , t hough t h i s does no t e x p l a i n why t h e y a r e p a i d l e s s and why t h e i r work i s c o n s i d e r e d l e s s s k i l l e d . I n V a n c o u v e r community o r g a n i s a t i o n s and c o l l e g e s r e p r o d u c e t h e gender d i v i s i o n by t e a c h i n g women m a c h i n i n g s k i l l s , w h i l e f o r men t h i s i s 'women's w o r k ' . F i n a l l y , C o c k b u r n (1985) a r g u e s t h a t u n i o n s i n the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y e n t r e n c h t h e gender d i v i s i o n w h i c h t h e y r e g a r d as ' n a t u r a l ' and t h u s a l s o p l a y a r o l e i n i t s r e p r o d u c t i o n . 3.4.2 The ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' clothing firm without f l e x i b l e production methods The manufac tu re o f a garment u s u a l l y o c c u r s i n a number o f d i s t i n c t s t e p s w h i c h range from the d e s i g n s t a g e , t o the c u t t i n g o f m a t e r i a l , and c o n s t r u c t i o n o f the ga rmen t . Each o f t h e s e t a s k s i s o f t e n s e g r e g a t e d i n t o d i f f e r e n t rooms i n the f a c t o r y so t h a t p a p e r , b u n d l e s of c l o t h and p a r t l y f i n i s h e d garments a r e t r a n s p o r t e d from room t o room. D e s i g n i n g i s the f i r s t s t e p i n p r o d u c t i o n and may be c a r r i e d out by the owner (Westwood, 1984; Gannage, 1986) , o r by a p r o f e s s i o n a l l y t r a i n e d i n d i v i d u a l . I n f a c t o r i e s where the a p p a r e l i s u n s t a n d a r d i s e d and s u b j e c t t o f a s h i o n c h a n g e s , the d e s i g n p r o c e s s i s v i t a l t o the s u r v i v a l o f t he f i r m . On the o t h e r h a n d , i n the manufac tu r e o f s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g where s t y l e s se ldom 79 vary, the design process described below, i s not an important part of production (and may even be absent in some f a c t o r i e s ) . In very general terms women's clothing tends to be unstandardised while men's i s more standardised and less subject to fashion changes. Samples of new designs are usually assembled to test the market, and the labour process in t h i s stage comes closest to t r a d i t i o n a l c r a f t methods of production as workers are involved in 'making through'; that i s , they assemble the garment from beginning to end (Coyle, 1982). The design is drawn up on paper and pieces of cardboard are used to represent the patterns which make up the garment. After the material i s cut according to the patterns, the garment i s assembled in whole by one or two h i g h l y - s k i l l e d sample sewers. Not s u r p r i s i n g l y , the garment undergoes many modifications before f i n a l l y reaching a showroom or a r e t a i l store. Additional material might need to be cut, d i f f e r e n t colours may be compared and adjustments to the st y l e may be required. Once a number of sample garments have been manufactured and approved by the owner or the manager, they are taken by salespeople to various fashion or r e t a i l shows, or orders are sought from the owners of small boutiques (Cockburn, 1985). In fashion clothing where demand i s uncertain, firms begin the actual manufacturing process only when an order has been made for a s p e c i f i c number of garments. 80 P r o d u c t i o n may t h e r e f o r e be s l o w e r d u r i n g c e r t a i n seasons o f the y e a r , and i n ext reme c a s e s the f a c t o r y may be f o r c e d t o c l o s e t e m p o r a r i l y . By c o n t r a s t , i n s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n , demand i s u s u a l l y more c o n s t a n t and p r o d u c t i o n i s not as v u l n e r a b l e t o the v a g a r i e s o f the marke t ( G i b b s , 1987 ) . In the e v e n t o f an o r d e r on the s ample , the garment r e t u r n s t o the d e s i g n room where p r o d u c t i o n b e g i n s i n e a r n e s t . The garment i s f i r s t g r a d e d , t h a t i s l a r g e r and s m a l l e r s i z e s a r e e x t r a p o l a t e d from the i n i t i a l d e s i g n . The head c u t t e r , a l m o s t i n v a r i a b l y a m a l e , i s r e s p o n s i b l e f o r g r a d i n g s p e c i f i c measurements from the s ample , as w e l l . as t h e t a s k s o f m a r k i n g and c u t t i n g d e s c r i b e d b e l o w . ^ Measurements between s i z e s a r e o f t e n complex and t h e g r a d e r may r e f e r t o a c h a r t f o r the c o r r e c t d i m e n s i o n s , a l t h o u g h many w o r k e r s w i t h y e a r s o f e x p e r i e n c e have memor i sed t h e g r a d i n g r u l e s . P i e c e s o f c a r d b o a r d a r e a g a i n c u t t o r e p r e s e n t the v a r i o u s p a t t e r n s , and a r e then t r a c e d on t r a n s p a r e n t p i e c e s o f p a p e r , by the c u t t e r , s e t t i n g up what i s known as m a r k e r s . S i n c e the t r a c i n g w i l l be used as a g u i d e f o r the c u t t e r s b l a d e , an e f f i c i e n t p lacement o f t h e c a r d b o a r d p i e c e s on the paper can save an owner a g r e a t d e a l o f money. C u t t e r s w i t h a ' g o o d e y e ' f o r m a r k i n g a r e r e g a r d e d as the most h i g h l y s k i l l e d employees i n t h e f a c t o r y and a r e p a i d a c c o r d i n g l y . ~3 In some f a c t o r i e s t h i s p r o c e s s has been f ragmented and d i f f e r e n t i n d i v i d u a l s migh t do t h e g r a d i n g , m a r k i n g and c u t t i n g ( e . g C o c k b u r n , 1985) . 81 In the cutting room, material i s spread from a large bolt across a long table. The bolt of c l o t h i s usually suspended over the table by a spreading machine which feeds out material as i t moves back and forth across the table. The number of layers spread depends on the size of the order or the physical properties of the fa b r i c . In the fashion industry since orders are usually smaller, the thickness of the layers does not normally exceed three or four inches. Where orders are larger, more common in the manufacture of standardised clothing, the thickness of the layers may only be li m i t e d by the cutter's blade (Waldinger, 1986). The paper marker is then placed over the material and the patterns are cut using a mechanised cutter with a straight or a c i r c u l a r blade depending on the type of machine. This process again requires a great deal of s k i l l : a s l i p or an unsteady hand may result in wasted c l o t h and money. After the material i s cut, i t i s bundled into packages, and leaves the cutting room for f i n a l assembly in the sewing room. The supervisor in the sewing room, usually a woman but not always (e.g. Westwood, 1984), i s responsible for d i v i s i n g an e f f i c i e n t technical d i v i s i o n of labour by deciding how the assembly of the garment i s to be divided between the workers on the shop f l o o r . In thi s stage, 'working through' the garment i s no longer possible (as 82 was the case in the assembly of a sample) because e f f i c i e n c y and speed are paramount. Dividing the work among operators i s often complex and time consuming since the supervisor must ensure that a steady flow in production i s maintained. I f , for example, the assembly process takes longer at the end stage of production, a bottleneck i s created and the entire process slows down, or comes to a halt wasting both time and money (Westwood, 1984). The d i v i s i o n of tasks in the labour process i s known as section work (Waldinger, 1986). Once the detailed d i v i s i o n of labour has been devised, bundles of clothing are passed around the shop f l o o r , each operator (usually a woman) sewing a pant leg or a c o l l a r over and over again u n t i l a l l the garments in the bundle are assembled. Since one operator may be involved in sewing c o l l a r s week after week, the work i s often very r e p e t i t i v e and monotonous. The p a r t i a l l y made garments are then passed on to f i n i s h e r s who complete the assembly process by sewing button holes and buttons, sleeves and neckpieces and other operations. F i n a l l y , the garment is pressed although t h i s work is becoming scarce with new fabr i c s which do not require pressing, and because the process i s increasingly being done by r e t a i l e r s once they receive a shipment of clothing. The differences in the production of standardised and unstandardised clothing, some of which have been mentioned above, has important implications for the structure of production. For example, the. manufacture of blue jeans, which tend to be r e l a t i v e l y unaffected by changes in s t y l e , usually occurs by longer production runs and with machinery dedicated to one task. The longer runs allow the r e a l i s a t i o n of economies of scale, usually not possible in the fashion industry (Waldinger, 1986). The manufacture of standardised clothing also a f f e c t s the d i v i s i o n or s e c t i o n a l i s a t i o n of work since where styl e s are constant, a new d i v i s i o n of work need not be di v i s e d for each production run. This has allowed some managers or supervisors, through a process of t r i a l and error, to perfect the d i v i s i o n s for maximum e f f i c i e n c y and speed. For example, Steedman (1986) argues shows that these are the tasks which may be involved in the manufacture of a man's coat: cutters of various grades, trimmers, f i t t e r s , f i t t e r ' s helpers, thread markers, pocket operators, helpers, l i n i n g makers, sleeve makers, canvas markers, edge tapers, operators-joiners, lapel and c o l l a r makers, buttonhole makers (by machine and by hand), edge basters, l i n i n g basters, shoulder and undercollar basters, top c o l l a r basters, head t a i l o r s , armhole sergers, f i n i s h e r s , button sewers, brushers, bushelers, seam pressers, edge pressers, off pressers, and basting pullers (Steedman, 1986, p. 155) The fragmentation and s i m p l i f i c a t i o n of clothing production has permitted manufacturers to relocate plants 84 to regions where workers are uns k i l l e d and wages are lower. In the 1930s, for example, firms began to move production from New York to nearby regions (e.g. Pennsylvania), while more recently clothing companies have relocated to Third World countries. Cheaper imports, p a r t i c u l a r l y since the 1950s from the Third World, have had detrimental e f f e c t s on manufacturers based in many advanced i n d u s t r i a l countries (Waldinger, 1986). While the manufacture of standardised clothing appears to be Fordist, the manufacture of unstandardised apparel seems post-Fordist. The d i v i s i o n of labour in fashion clothing firms tends to be less detailed because changing fashions do not permit managers to perfect a very fragmented d i v i s i o n of tasks. For example, the manufacture of unstandardised c l o t h i n g may only require "cutters, and trimmers, machine operators, f i n i s h e r s and pressers" (Steedman, 1986, p. 155). Although tasks in standardised clothing production may be more fragmented, in both types of cl o t h i n g assembly occurs by section work, so that no individual operator sews the entire garment. Unstandardised c l o t h i n g i s unlike Fordist production in other ways too: i t i s usually produced in short runs with more basic machinery, since dedicated machinery is not possible due to frequent design changes. Markets are fl e e t i n g arid small in scale, c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of consumption patterns more prevalent in the new regime of accumulation. Rapid turnaround to meet the v i c i s s i t u d e s of demand i s v i t a l for the s u r v i v a l of these companies. At the same time, the nature of the market affords them some protect ion from offshore imports which are unable to respond quick ly enough to the market. 3 . 4 . 3 F l e x i b l e production in the 'modern' clothing firm In the l a s t few years advances in computerised graphics d i sp lays and the manipulation of objects on the screen have been developed for the c lo th ing indus try . Computer Aided Design (CAD) systems have been instrumental in transforming the designing stage of the product ion process, and designers now work on mult icoloured video d isp lay units attached to a l i g h t sens i t ive pen or s t y l u s , and a data board (Plate 2). Designs are created d i r e c t l y on high reso lut ion screens, using software described as 'user f r i e n d l y ' : s ty les and colours displayed by the computer-generated model can be modified and var ious fashion items such as bel ts and tr im can be added. In one of the very sophis t icated systems, the screen i s capable of generating up to 16 m i l l i o n d i f f erent colours (Bobbin, September, 1985). CAD machines allow the operator to rotate and moved the models on the screen with simple 86 commands. W i t h CAD, t h e d e s i g n e r can a l s o e x p e r i m e n t w i t h d i f f e r e n t b a c k g r o u n d s ; f o r e x a m p l e , summer f a s h i o n s may be s u p e r i m p o s e d on a s u m m e r - l i k e l a n d s c a p e . F i n a l l y , once a d e s i g n i s f i n i s h e d i t can be s t o r e d i n the c o m p u t e r ' s memory f o r f u t u r e u s e . However , s i n c e a t t h i s s t age CAD machines a r e u sed p r i m a r i l y f o r d e m o n s t r a t i n g new d e s i g n s , t h e i r impact on p r o d u c t i v i t y i s n e g l i g i b l e . P l a t e 2 D e s i g n e r w o r k i n g on CAD m a c h i n e On t h e o t h e r h a n d , a n o t h e r i n n o v a t i o n known a s g r a d i n g / m a r k i n g m a c h i n e s h a s an i m m e d i a t e i m p a c t on f l e x i b i l i t y , c o s t e f f i c i e n c y a n d t u r n a r o u n d t i m e i n t h e d a y - t o - d a y p r o d u c t i o n o f c l o t h i n g . A c c o r d i n g t o one d i s t r i b u t o r , t h e s y s t e m c a n be r e - p a i d w i t h i n a y e a r on s a v i n g s o f w a s t e d c l o t h a l o n e {Bobbin, November, 1 9 8 5 ) . 88 Grading/marking equipment f a l l s under the rubric of computer aided manufacture (CAM), not to be confused with the CAD machine which a s s i s t s only in the design process, and not in the manufacturing process. The operator uses a 'mouse', which enables her/him to move the cursor around the screen to outline the various pieces which make up the garment such as sleeves, front and back sections, and c o l l a r s (Plate 3). D i g i t i s e d patterns may be lengthened or enlarged and other minor modifications may be added to the design with a stylus pen. Many commands, such as adding f l a r e s and pleats, have been pre-programmed into the computer's memory so that the operator simply positions the cursor and chooses an option - (Cockburn, 1985). Once a l l the pieces for a p a r t i c u l a r garment are on the screen, they are saved on a diskette for future use. Storing patterns saves time in d i g i t i s i n g new patterns, since blocks of items such as a complete sleeve pattern can be r e - c a l l e d without having to d i g i t i s e the individual parts of the pattern again. P l a t e 3 Marker/grader machine with p a t t e r n s and marker Fu r t h e r , with marking/grading computers, p a t t e r n s can be a u t o m a t i c a l l y graded, v a s t l y s i m p l i f y i n g t h i s p r e v i o u s l y complicated task. A l l the grade r u l e s and measurements p r e v i o u s l y i n the mind of the s k i l l e d c u t t e r / g r a d e r are programmed i n t o the computer's memory. For example, in order to grade a block from a s i z e 32 to a 90 36, the designer moves the cursor to each corner of the piece, chooses, the appropriate function, and increases or decreases the size of the garment with the push of a button (Cockburn, 1985; Gibbs, 1987). Once entered, a l l the patterns for an order are re-c a l l e d from the computer's memory so that a marker can be set up. Patterns are sh i f t e d , rotated and inverted u n t i l the most e f f i c i e n t arrangement i s found on the bolt of c l o t h represented on the screen. The computer i s pre-programmed to place patterns close to the sides of the c l o t h or next to other blocks to avoid wastage. Once the marker i s set up, the software calculates exactly how much cl o t h i s being used and how much i s being wasted. If the wastage i s too great, the operator simply re-arranges the patterns u n t i l the optimum marker i s set up. Prior to the machines, markers were drawn by the cutters who, with a 'trained eye', could judge whether the marker was e f f i c i e n t enough or not. With the new techniques, his work has now become quantified in the computer and the operator's decision i s now based on an objective percentage (Cockburn, 1985). At the same time, the 'keen eye' of the cutter/marker i s apparently not as e f f i c i e n t : up to two inches of c l o t h are saved per garment with the new marking equipment (Kirsten, pers. comm., 1987). A second advantage i s that with the new system i t i s no longer necessary to cut cumbersome pieces of cardboard to 91 represent the patterns, as blocks are saved on floppy disks. A l l i e d to t h i s , i s the fact that markers developed with CAM can now be a lot longer with software which allows the operator to cut c l o t h for many more unique designs at a time, thereby improving f l e x i b i l i t y . F i n a l l y and perhaps of v i t a l importance in the fashion industry, the new equipment improves the turnaround time from design to cutting s u b s t a n t i a l l y . Once the most e f f i c i e n t marker has been set up on the computer system, i t i s either drawn by a p l o t t e r linked to the marking/grading machine (Plate 4) or the fabric i s cut immediately by a computer cutter linked to the CAM machine (Plate 5). The cutters, which are r e l a t i v e l y new innovations, have steel blades guided by a laser beam. While the CAD and CAM equipment described above has important applications for the fashion industry where styles vary, and response time and f l e x i b i l i t y are v i t a l , the heavy duty cutters are better suited to the long production runs c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of standardised clothing. Sample cutting machines, on the other hand, are less sophisticated and are capable of c u t t i n g through only two or three layers of material. Like the CAD and CAM computers, these sample cutters are more suited to changing designs c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the fashion industry. Plate 4 Computer Cutter M a r k e r s drawn by a p l o t t e r a r e taken t o the c u t t i n g room where the m a t e r i a l i s spread out on l o n g t a b l e s . W h i l e the o l d e r s p r e a d i n g machines are d r i v e n by hand, new s o p h i s t i c a t e d s p r e a d i n g equipment i s programmable and m e c h a n i c a l l y d r i v e n {Bobbin, October, 1985). A d a t a d i s k e t t e i s programmed w i t h the r e q u i r e d number of l a y e r s and l e n g t h of m a t e r i a l . The d i s k e t t e i s i n s e r t e d i n t o the 93 c o m p u t e r i s e d s p r e a d e r w h i c h r u n s up and down the t a b l e s p r e a d i n g the m a t e r i a l f a u l t l e s s l y t o the s p e c i f i c a t i o n s on the d i s k e t t e . Manua l m a c h i n e s o f t e n s p r e a d the m a t e r i a l t o o t i g h t l y o r t o o l o o s e l y , j e o p a r d i s i n g the a c c u r a c y o f c u t t i n g (Bobbin, O c t o b e r , 1 9 8 5 ) . S p r e a d i n g m a c h i n e s , l i k e the computer c u t t e r s , seem more s u i t e d t o l o n g p r o d u c t i o n runs more common i n the manufac tu re o f s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g . The marke r i s t hen p l a c e d o v e r the m a t e r i a l and the c u t t e r s c u t t he p a t t e r n s . Fo r f i r m s w i t h o u t c o m p u t e r i s e d c u t t i n g equ ipmen t t h i s p r o c e s s has e s s e n t i a l l y r emained u n c h a n g e d . F i n a l l y , as i n the more t r a d i t i o n a l f i r m s , the m a t e r i a l i s c o l l e c t e d i n b u n d l e s and sen t t o the sewing o p e r a t o r s f o r a s s e m b l y . 94 P l a t e 5 Computer p l o t t e r A t t e m p t s t o d e v e l o p an automated or f l e x i b l e sewing mach ine have p r o v e n v e r y d i f f i c u l t ( M o r o k v a s i c et al , 1 9 8 6 ) . The v a r i a b i l i t y o f s ewing a c t i o n s , the c o n t i n u o u s movement o f the c l o t h and c h a n g i n g s t y l e s have a l l impeded the deve lopment of a t o t a l l y automated sys tem ( C o c k b u r n , 1985 ) . A t f i r s t g l a n c e , many of the c o m p u t e r i s e d machines appear t o be no d i f f e r e n t t han t h e i r o l d e r p r e d e c e s s o r s 95 ( P l a t e 6). C l o s e r i n s p e c t i o n , however , r e v e a l s t h a t m i c r o p r o c e s s o r s have r e v o l u t i o n i s e d c e r t a i n a s p e c t s of the sewing p r o c e s s . P l a t e 6 C o m p u t e r i s e d f l e x i b l e s e w i n g machine Most o f the new mach ines a r e o n l y c a p a b l e of s p e e d i n g up a s i n g l e s p e c i f i c t a s k , such as the sewing of a pant l i n i n g or a t t a c h i n g a f l a p t o a p o c k e t . These machines a r e d e d i c a t e d and i n f l e x i b l e , c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of equipment 96 in Fordism, and are thus more suited to standardised clothing production. Models of the 'playback' type, are also rather i n f l e x i b l e and are only able to repeat the number of stitches sewed by the operator (Gibbs, 1987). The most advanced equipment, on the other hand, i s more suited to the changing designs and tasks c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of unstandardised clothing production because i t i s programmable, and can store up to 512 d i f f e r e n t patterns on a small diskette. New patterns are e a s i l y added onto the diskettes with a special pen attached to a personal computer. An operator might spend one or two minutes sewing a pa r t i c u l a r sewing design (e.g. a logo), while the computer i s able to perform the task in a matter of seconds. Salespeople usually recommend that two are purchased for each operator. In thi s arrangement, the worker moves from machine to machine setting up one for the sewing task while the other i s busy sewing (Kirsten, pers. comm. 1987). While the women have lost control of the pace of their work, and in Braverman's (1974) terms have become further d e s k i l l e d , for the owners, the advantages are impressive since turnaround i s improved without compromising f l e x i b i l i t y . Pressing i s the f i n a l task in the chain of steps to a finished garment, and i s t r a d i t i o n a l l y c a r r i e d out by males. Few inroads have been made into t h i s area of production because many clothes no longer require 97 pressing. Some machines, however, have been introduced to a number of f a c t o r i e s and have speeded up t h i s aspect of production. For example, the 'Paris' pants presser i s f l e x i b l e in that i t i s capable of pressing many types of pants and d i f f e r e n t kinds of material very e a s i l y (Plate 7). F i n a l l y , as the advertisement states, unskilled labour can operate i t . 98 PLUS: CRINKLE FINISH, STONE WASHED, VELOURS The PARIS PANTS FINISHER — with simple adjustments f inishes all pants . . . . Substantial^ reduced pressing room costs. Improved quality • Utilizes unskilled labor • Fast pavhack on investment • Versatile finishing ol all popular fabrics idcnims, regular cottons blends, corduroy! • Uniform finishing ot hard to press paneled or vokcd garments with patch pockets, etc • Up to.s times greater production than conventional presses • Automatic topping and legging • Adiusuble control-, tor t. hanging size and styles ,flares, bells straights peggcdl • Elimination ot troublesome double creasing of side scams • Ultra sort finish tor stone wash and plush fabrics. • and PARIS has the Midas Touch when it comes to reducing pressing room costs. There's a speciahzed PARIS tmisher for: BLOUSES, DRESSES, INFANTS WEAR, IACKETS, KNITTED DRESSES and SKIRTS, LINCE PAIAMAS, PANTS, ROBES, SHIRTS, SHORTS, SKIRTS and SPORTS SHIRTS P l a t e 7 ' P a r i s ' p r e s s e r One of the more s t a r t l i n g and a n a c h r o n i s t i c o f a l l the i n n o v a t i o n s , c o n s i d e r i n g t h a t m a n u f a c t u r i n g i s a p p a r e n t l y moving away from the mass p r o d u c t i o n l i n e s dominant i n F o r d i s m , i s t he u n i t p r o d u c t i o n s y s t e m ( U P S ) . S i n c e a g r e a t d e a l o f t ime i s spen t h a n d l i n g t h e ga rmen t s and v e r y l i t t l e t ime i s spen t sewing on the shop f l o o r o f 99 most cloth i n g f a c t o r i e s , the UPS permits substantial improvements in turnaround.* The garments are conveyed on a pulley around the factory and each unit is c e n t r a l l y controlled by a personal computer. Each operator takes the garment, performs one operation, and releases i t so that i t can be conveyed to the next operator. Work stations are equipped with a bar code reader and each hanger i s bar coded so that piece-work wages may be calculated automatically from a central computer. The assembly l i n e ' s primary function i s to decrease non-productive time or according to the regulationist school, the porosity of the working day. Unlike some of. the machinery described above, the UPS system i s suitable for the manufacture of standardised and unstandardised clothing production; decreasing the porosity of work results in improved productivity, regardless of the type of c l o t h i n g . This quote from a trade journal sums up the 4 According to a trade journal, the turnaround time can be cut in half with the UPS system (Bobbi n, June, 1988). 100 advantages of the UPS system: Faster sewing speeds do not answer the growing need for f l e x i b i l i t y , q uality and d e s k i l l i n g at most of the world's apparel workplaces. Instead of reducing the time a garment spends under the needle (less than 1% of t o t a l time spent in the sewing room), apparel technology should aim at reducing handling time between sewing operations, and find other ways to cut down on the great amount of unproductive time now wasted as work-in-process slowly moves, and waits, and i s untied, b r i e f l y sewn, ret i e d , and moved to another waiting spot as i t progresses g l a c i a l l y through the sewing room (Bobbin, May, 1988) The f i n a l innovations to be discussed deals with the just-in-time delivery of t e x t i l e s to the factory and the just-in-time delivery of manufactured c l o t h i n g to the r e t a i l e r to maintain low inventories. Pre-dying, the term for the j i t delivery of t e x t i l e s involves ordering undyed c l o t h in bulk from a t e x t i l e m i l l . Once the apparel firm receives an order for clothing, the production manager requests the colour and amount of material for that p a r t i c u l a r consignment. The cl o t h i s dyed, a r e l a t i v e l y quick process, and is delivered to the apparel firm. The j i t delivery of the c l o t h saves fashion firms, in p a r t i c u l a r , up to two weeks in turnaround time. In order to maintain lower inventories in manufactured clothing, most fashion firms also make clothing to order on samples 101 w h i c h a r e . d i s t r i b u t e d . W h i l s t m a n u f a c t u r e r s o f more s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g s t i l l p u r c h a s e t h e i r t e x t i l e s i n b u l k ; many a r e not w i l l i n g t o pay f o r the h i g h c o s t s of s t o r i n g f i n i s h e d a p p a r e l , and have t u r n e d t o the j i t d e l i v e r y o f c l o t h i n g . 102 3.4 Conclusion From a v e r y humble b e g i n n i n g , V a n c o u v e r ' s c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y i s now p l a y i n g an i m p o r t a n t r o l e i n the c i t y ' s economy. U n s t a n d a r d i s e d f a s h i o n c l o t h i n g where s t y l e s change f r e q u e n t l y and demand f l u c t u a t e s w i l d l y ( e . g . Vancouver Sun, 2 / 8 / 1 9 8 8 ) , i s the f a s t e s t g r o w i n g a p p a r e l l i n e i n the c i t y . The i m p l i c a t i o n s o f t h e g r o w t h of the a p p a r e l i n d u s t r y a re s i g n i f i c a n t i n t e rms o f the employment s t r u c t u r e i n V a n c o u v e r , o f t e n d e s c r i b e d as p o s t - i n d u s t r i a l . I t was a r g u e d t h a t the g r o w i n g i m p o r t a n c e of c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n i s c r e a t i n g employment o p p o r t u n i t i e s f o r immigran t l a b o u r who a r e u s u a l l y p a r t o f t h e s econda ry l a b o u r m a r k e t . D e v e l o p m e n t s i n Vancouve r seem t o m i r r o r t h e s i t u a t i o n i n o t h e r l a r g e N o r t h A m e r i c a n c i t i e s , where a p o l a r i s e d employment s t r u c t u r e has emerged. W e l l - p a i d o c c u p a t i o n s i n the f i n a n c i a l s e c t o r and the p r o f e s s i o n s c o - e x i s t a l o n g s i d e l o w - p a y i n g m a n u f a c t u r i n g and s e r v i c e w o r k . The d i f f e r e n c e s i n the l a b o u r p r o c e s s between a ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' and a ' m o d e r n ' f i r m w i t h f l e x i b l e m a n u f a c t u r i n g t e c h n i q u e s a r e s i g n i f i c a n t . New t e c h n o l o g y i s a f f e c t i n g e v e r y s t age of t h e l a b o u r p r o c e s s and the e f f e c t s on shop f l o o r and on w o r k e r ' s s k i l l s a r e c o n s i d e r a b l e . However , some o f t h e new e q u i p m e n t , w h i c h 103 i s f l e x i b l e and improves response time i s more suited to the manufacture of fashion clothing where styles change frequently. On the other hand, equipment which i s dedicated and only increases the pace of production, i s more applicable to the production of standardised clothing where fashion changes are less frequent. At the same time the UPS system i s applicable to the manufacture of both types of clothing. However, there are many r e s t r i c t i o n s to the implementation of the equipment discussed in t h i s chapter; in the next chapter, two types of firms which have not purchased the f l e x i b l e machinery are examined. 104 CHAPTER IV Survivor firms and new investment 4.1 Introduction I n t h i s c h a p t e r two t y p e s of f i r m s i n Vancouve r a r e e x a m i n e d : new f o r e i g n i n v e s t o r s f rom Hong Kong and s m a l l e r s u r v i v o r f i r m s . These f i r m s a r e d i s t i n g u i s h a b l e from the l a r g e r f a s h i o n f i r m s i n t h a t t h e y have not p u r c h a s e d f l e x i b l e m a c h i n e r y . Fo r some the p r i c e o f the equipment i s t o o h i g h (see c h a p t e r s i x ) , w h i l e , f o r t h o s e m a n u f a c t u r i n g s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g , f l e x i b l e m a c h i n e r y does no t s u i t t h e i r n e e d s . I n s t e a d , many new i n v e s t o r s and s m a l l s u r v i v o r f i r m s a r e f l e x i b l e i n t h a t t h e y adap t t o s w i n g s i n the economy p r i m a r i l y t h r o u g h a s e c o n d a r y l a b o u r f o r c e . L a r g e r f a s h i o n f i r m s d i s c u s s e d i n c h a p t e r s i x , on the o t h e r h a n d , a c h i e v e f l e x i b i l i t y i n d e s i g n p r i m a r i l y t h r o u g h f l e x i b l e e q u i p m e n t . The v a r i o u s r o l e s o f i m p o r t t a r i f f s , t h e s t a t e , and the l a b o u r f o r c e i n the c i t y a r e p i v o t a l i n u n d e r s t a n d i n g the emergence o f new i n v e s t o r s and the s u r v i v a l of s m a l l f i r m s . Impor t t a r i f f s , and the two t y p e s of f i r m s a r e d e s c r i b e d i n t h i s c h a p t e r , w h i l e o n l y b r i e f m e n t i o n i s made of t h e l a b o u r f o r c e . T h i s l a s t a s p e c t i s a d d r e s s e d i n d e t a i l i n the n e x t c h a p t e r . 105 4.2 Import T a r i f f s The General Agreements on Trade and T a r i f f s (GATT) was implemented in 1948 to regulate the trade of commodities on a global scale. The aims of the accord were to provide guidelines under which global trade would be c a r r i e d out to promote "...economic e f f i c i e n c y and growth in a l l trading countries" (Aho and Aronson, 1985, p. 18). At the same time, GATT was concerned with l i m i t i n g state intervention to allow the opening of markets and the l i b e r a l i s a t i o n of trade in an orderly manner. Under the aegis of GATT, clothing imports from the Third World, p a r t i c u l a r l y from Japan, began to penetrate the Canadian market as early as the 1950s. During the same decade, Taiwan and Hong Kong, also following a strategy of export i n d u s t r i a l i s a t i o n , joined Japan in the shipment of apparel to the North American market. The l e v e l of 'import penetration', or the percentage of domestic consumption of imports versus l o c a l production, f i r s t caught the attention of domestic manufacturers in the mid 1950s. The 'import problem', as i t became known, referred to the undermining of l o c a l producers by firms located offshore with cheaper imports. For many domestic manufacturers, GATT had exacerbated the 'import problem' by according Japan and Hong Kong 'most 106 favoured nation' status thereby forcing Canada and other western countries to accept their imports without r e s t r i c t i o n s (Clothing Inquiry, 1977). A number of western c a p i t a l i s t countries responded by implementing their own quotas independent of GATT (and therefore in contravention of the global trade agreement). Canada, for example, negotiated a voluntary accord with Japan in 1960 to l i m i t clothing imports from t h i s newly-industrialising country. GATT o f f i c i a l s were, however, eager to accommodate the i l l e g a l agreements into their guidelines for fear of a worldwide move toward protectionism in the clothing industry (Clothing Inquiry, 1977). In response, GATT negotiated a Long Term Agreement (LTA) in 1962, which allowed member countries to impose rest r a i n t s on imports from exporting countries in percentage terms. Canada reacted quickly to these new guidelines and,.between 1963 and 1971, b i l a t e r a l r e s t r a i n t agreements were successfully negotiated with eleven countries, including Japan which had been u n o f f i c i a l l y under r e s t r a i n t since 1960 (Table I I ) . The quotas did not, however, cover a l l types of clothing: by 1970, for example, Japan was only r e s t r i c t e d from exporting blouses, s h i r t s and trousers to Canada (Clothing Inquiry, 1977). 1 07 Table I I . Long term agreements Canada. Country Year Japan 1960 Taiwan 1963 China 1963 Hong Kong 1 965 Korea 1967 Malaysia 1968 Singapore 1968 Poland 1970 Rumania 1 970 Trinidad and Tobago 1 971 Macao 1971 Source: Clothing Inquiry, 1977 negotiated with In 1973, the f i r s t of a new set l e g i s l a t i v e agreements replacing the LTA, were negotiated. The new' Multi-Fibre Agreements (MFA), l i k e the LTA's involved b i l a t e r a l negotiations between importing and exporting countries so that in each accord the type of clo t h i n g under r e s t r a i n t and quota increases were discussed. To many Canadian manufacturers i t seemed that the MFA's s t i l l favoured Third World exporting countries in that importing nations were forced to accept at least a six per cent increase in imports from the exporting country. As mentioned above, t h i s was in keeping with the s p i r i t of GATT which was to foster international trade. The MFA was also f l e x i b l e in that i f a f u l l quota was not reached in one year i t could be carried forward to the next year. Manufacturers in Canada were dismayed by the MFA as i t appeared they would s t i l l be undercut by cheaper imports. 108 In 1974, garment w o r k e r s a l s o v o i c e d t h e i r g r i e v a n c e s by p i c k e t i n g i n M o n t r e a l t o encourage consumers t o pu rchase a p p a r e l made i n Canada (Provi nee, 3 0 / 3 / 1 9 7 4 ) . F u r t h e r r e p r e s e n t a t i o n s were made i n 1976 on b e h a l f o f t he A p p a r e l M a n u f a c t u r e r s I n s t i t u t e s o f Quebec and O n t a r i o , the M a n i t o b a F a s h i o n I n s t i t u t e , and by two o f the l a r g e s t u n i o n s i n C a n a d a . I n t h e i r s u b m i s s i o n , t h e s e g roups a r g u e d t h a t i f r e s t r i c t i o n s were not t i g h t e n e d , i m p o r t s wou ld c o n t r o l f i f t y p e r c e n t o f t he C a n a d i a n marke t by the end of 1976. L a b o u r and m a n u f a c t u r e r s were j u s t i f i e d i n t h e i r r e s p o n s e . J u s t two y e a r s a f t e r the f i r s t MFA, d o m e s t i c p r o d u c t i o n a c c o u n t e d f o r o n l y 55 p e r c e n t o f the C a n a d i a n m a r k e t ; two y e a r s e a r l i e r d o m e s t i c m a n u f a c t u r e r s had h e l d 68 p e r c e n t o f t h e marke t ( T a b l e I I I ) . In an emergency measu re , t h e f e d e r a l government i n v o k e d a r t i c l e 19 of GATT i n 1977, w h i c h r e s t r i c t e d f u r t h e r i n c r e a s e s i n i m p o r t s w i t h a l l c o u n t r i e s i n each b i l a t e r a l agreement ( C l o t h i n g I n q u i r y , 1 9 7 7 ) . 1 T a b l e III A p p a r e n t m a r k e t s f o r C a n a d i a n c l o t h i n g Year Domestic Imported 1973 67 33 1974 68 32 1975 64 36 197 6 55 45 1977 65 35 1978 68 32 1979 68 32 1980 72 28 1981 68 32 1982 67 33 1983 62 38 1984 59 41 1985 59 41 1986 57 43 S o u r c e : A n n u a l r e p o r t on c l o t h i n g and t e x t i l e s , 1983-87 The e f f e c t o f a r t i c l e 19 was p o s i t i v e f o r l o c a l m a n u f a c t u r e r s a n d t h e i r s h a r e o f t h e C a n a d i a n m a r k e t r e t u r n e d t o 68 p e r c e n t by t h e end o f 1978 ( T a b l e I I I ) . C l o t h i n g p r o d u c e r s f o u n d t h e C a n a d i a n m a r k e t " . . . a l o t b e t t e r now t h a n i t was two y e a r s ago, m a i n l y b e c a u s e t h e i m p o r t r e s t r i c t i o n s i m p o s e d by O t t a w a a l m o s t two y e a r s ago have f i n a l l y t a k e n e f f e c t . . . " {Vancouver Sun, 10 /10 /1979) . W i t h a p o s i t i v e r e s p o n s e f r o m m a n u f a c t u r e r s a n d i n c r e a s e d p r e s s u r e f r o m c o n s u m e r s c o n c e r n e d a b o u t h i g h e r c l o t h i n g M O p r i c e s p r o v o k e d w i t h the r e s t r i c t i o n s (Vancouver Sun, 1 0 / 2 / 1 9 7 7 ; Province, 2 7 / 1 2 / 1 9 7 7 ; 1 0 / 5 / 1 9 7 8 ) , a r t i c l e 19 was r e v o k e d i n 1978, and a new MFA was n e g o t i a t e d . A l t h o u g h some g r o u p s i n Canada f a v o u r e d i n s t i t u t i o n a l i s i n g a r t i c l e 19, t h i s was no t a v i a b l e o p t i o n s i n c e GATT r u l e s s t i p u l a t e t h a t emergency measures can o n l y be implemented f o r a maximum o f t h r e e y e a r s . M F A ' s a r e now r e w r i t t e n e v e r y f o u r y e a r s , and i n each new agreement a d d i t i o n a l c o u n t r i e s a r e drawn i n t o b i l a t e r a l a c c o r d s w i t h C a n a d a . In the most r e c e n t agreement (MFA 4, 1986 ) , i m p o r t s from a t o t a l o f 25 c o u n t r i e s were s u b j e c t t o q u o t a r e s t r a i n t s . In t h e 1980s , t h e major e x p o r t e r s t o Canada a r e s t i l l , a c c o r d i n g t o government r e p o r t s , t he ' b i g f o u r ' : Hong K o n g , S o u t h K o r e a , Taiwan and the P e o p l e ' s R e p u b l i c of C h i n a . Howeve r , t h e i r sha re of t o t a l i m p o r t s i n Canada has d e c r e a s e d f rom a peak of ove r 70% i n 1983 t o 62% i n 1986. On t h e o t h e r h a n d , i n d u s t r i a l i s e d c o u n t r i e s w h i c h i n c l u d e , J a p a n , t he U n i t e d S t a t e s , I t a l y , U n i t e d K ingdom, West Germany, and F r a n c e , have i n c r e a s e d t h e i r s h a r e of i m p o r t s t o t h e C a n a d i a n m a r k e t . C o u n t r i e s r e f e r r e d t o as ' o t h e r ' i n o f f i c i a l s t a t i s t i c s , have a l s o improved t h e i r p o s i t i o n r e l a t i v e t o the ' l o w c o s t ' c o u n t r i e s ( T a b l e I V ) . I t seems t h a t t he ' b i g f o u r ' have l o s t g round i n the C a n a d i a n marke t because t hey a r e s u b j e c t t o t i g h t e r r e s t r i c t i o n s v i s - a - v i s o t h e r c l o t h i n g e x p o r t e r s . F o r example , i n t h e MFA c o v e r i n g the p e r i o d from 1982 t o 1986, Hong Kong and Korea were permitted to increase the l e v e l of t h e i r exports by 2.6%; Taiwan by 2.8%; and the People's Republic of China by 5% every year. For i n d u s t r i a l i s e d c o u n t r i e s , increases in the MFA range from 3 to .14% per year, while most are around 6 per cent. The Canadian .state i s obviously anxious to l i m i t the dominant p o s i t i o n of low-cost exporters: in MFA f i v e , which spans 1987-1991, quotas for the 'big four' have been tightened even f u r t h e r (Table V). Table IV Canadian imports of c l o t h i n g from, v a r i o u s sources Year I n d u s t r i a l i s e d 'Low cost' Other 1982 21.7% 67 .6% 10.7% 1983 19.9% 70.6% 9.5% 1984 19.8% 67 .9% 12.3% 1985 22.1% 64.0% 14.0% 1986 23 .2% 62.0% 14.8% Source: Annual reports of c l o t h i n g and t e x t i l e s , 1987 1 T a b l e V A n n u a l r a t e s o f g r o w t h f o r e x p o r t i n g c o u n t r i e s u n d e r MFA f o u r and f i v e C o u n t r y MFA IV (1981-1986) ( R a t e o f g r o w t h ) MFA V (1987-1991) ( R a t e o f g r o w t h ) Hong Kong 2.6% 1.1% T a i w a n 2 . 8% 0.5 % S o u t h K o r e a 2.6% 0.5% C h i n a 5.1% 5.0% S o u r c e : S o u r c e : A n n u a l r e p o r t s o f c l o t h i n g a n d t e x t i l e s , 1987 The e f f e c t i v e n e s s o f t h e MFA's i n p r o t e c t i n g l o c a l m a n u f a c t u r e r s i s a . c o n t i n u a l f o c u s f o r d e b a t e . A p a r t f r o m t h e y e a r s d u r i n g w h i c h a r t i c l e 19 was i n f o r c e a n d q u o t a s were f r o z e n , t h e l e v e l o f i m p o r t p e n e t r a t i o n has i n c r e a s e d s i n c e t h e 1970s. T h e r e a r e a number o f r e a s o n s t h a t a c c o u n t f o r t h e l a c k o f p r o t e c t i o n a f f o r d e d by t h e a g r e e m e n t s . F i r s t , b i l a t e r a l a c c o r d s a r e n e g o t i a t e d o n l y a f t e r a p a r t i c u l a r c o u n t r y h a s e x p o r t e d enough c l o t h i n g t o s e r i o u s l y u n d e r m i n e l o c a l m a n u f a c t u r e r s ( i . e . , i m p o r t s f r o m any c o u n t r y o u t s i d e an MFA a r e u n r e g u l a t e d u n l e s s i t i s shown t h a t t h e y have a f f e c t e d l o c a l m a n u f a c t u r e r s ) . Not o n l y i s i t d i f f i c u l t t o p r o v e t h a t i m p o r t s a r e 1 1 3 aff e c t i n g domestic producers, but by the time the l e g i s l a t i o n comes into e f f e c t , the damage has been done, and in many cases factories have been already closed. For th i s reason bureaucrats and p o l i t i c i a n s have referred to the re s t r a i n t agreement process with Third World countries as the 'great chase' (Textile and Clothing Inquiry, 1985). In a very real sense MFAs control the damage after the fact and therefore cannot prevent i t . A second problem i s that MFAs do not cover a l l types of cloth i n g or, according to one manufacturer in Vancouver, they do not cover the right kind of clothing (2). 1 Manufacturers in Canada seem w i l l i n g to endure imports as long as the same products are not being made domestically. State measures,, on the other hand, appear to r e s t r i c t certain types of apparel without f i r s t considering whether they are being manufactured in Canada. F i n a l l y , i t has been argued that the agreement is geared to exporting rather than importing countries: i n d u s t r i a l i s e d countries are forced to accept increases in imports irrespective of the strength of domestic consumer demand and decreases in import l e v e l s are not permitted in the agreements (Textile and Clothing Inquiry, 1985). 1 Numbers in brackets following a quote refer to clothing firms sampled in Vancouver. The number corresponds to Table VI. Despite r i s i n g l e v e l s of import penetration, and the obvious e f f e c t they have had on the industry, the role p r o t e c t i o n i s t measures have played in protecting Canadian manufacturers has not been i n s i g n i f i c a n t . Importers have faced new problems as r e s t r i c t i o n s are tightened (Vancouver Sun, 17/1/1975; 10/12/1976; 17/8/1983) and the fact that firms from Hong Kong are investing in Vancouver to leap-frog quota r e s t r i c t i o n s suggests that the MFA's are at least partly successful. In addition, the survival of small firms in the c i t y not large enough to invest in f l e x i b l e machinery to improve their turnaround time suggests that import r e s t r i c t i o n s have had some role in protecting l o c a l manufacturers. Firms of these two types, new investors and smaller firms, are examined in the following two sections of t h i s chapter. 4 . 3 Survival of the small firm Some survivor firms manufacture standardised clothing while others produce more fashion conscious apparel. In either case, however, they tend to be smaller than the large fashion firms discussed in chapter six. Standardised garment manufacturers seem more dependent on protection from import quotas and assistance from the p r o v i n c i a l government, while small fashion firms rely on 1 1 5 fast turnaround time and f l e x i b i l i t y in changing from one style to another to compete with firms located offshore. However, for both types of firms, their methods of achieving f l e x i b i l i t y have been practiced by companies in the garment industry for many years and d i f f e r from the methods employed by the larger firms (see chapter s i x ) . Unable or unwilling to invest in f l e x i b l e equipment or substantially restructure production, a number of smaller firms persist in Vancouver (Table VI). For example, the owner/designer of a sports jacket and outerwear establishment interviewed for t h i s study employs some 20 workers, most of who are female immigrants. Turnaround time, which they improve by h i r i n g more labour, seems just as important for these firms as i t is for the larger fashion companies: "Turnaround i s the most important thing....We improve i t by h i r i n g a few more people i f they're a v a i l a b l e " (14). This manager also seemed rather unhappy about the need for quick response in the industry: "The thing i s in t h i s business everything i s needed yesterday" (14). Reducing inventories i s also a major goal for the smaller survivor firms and one company in the sample manufactured to order only, a change from when i t "...used to make to stock. We used to make extras. Don't do i t any more - i t doesn't warrant i t - a lot of people are going bankrupt" (5). However, the firms in the sample continued to order th e i r t e x t i l e s in bulk a n d t h e r e was no e v i d e n c e o f any p r e - d y e i n g p r o c e s s d i s c u s s e d i n t h e p r e v i o u s c h a p t e r . P r o d u c t i o n r u n s o f a p a r t i c u l a r s t y l e f o r one s u r v i v o r f i r m v a r i e d f r o m 5 t o T a b l e VI T a b u l a t e d d a t a f r o m i n t e r v i e w s w i t h 14 m a n u f a c t u r e r s i n V a n c o u v e r p P* P* LD co ai LP LJ ro p 15 LJ tO (—1 o p-P 3 ro ro LJ LJ LJ — oo ro LJ LP o ro cn LP LJ ro O o ro o n p-LP o O o o o O o LP LP o o LP O 3 N • o rop-0 a X C 3 £ H n r - H to 1-ti o to >-3 n > 3 W 00 £ £ £ € £ 00 P3 3 O 3 rt> ro t p1 Q i TJ tu ry £ I O C 0 3 ro TJ 5< ro 0 ro o ro c P a in P- 3 tu t/1 o tu w 0 10 p- ro in 3 3 3 a 3 0 P- tu 3 tu 3 tu 3 0 *0 l-ti - p 3" rr rr 3" P 3^  ^ OJ 3" ro P- . ro - P 1 p ro P Q p 3 a M P- O to P- 3f 3" p- r t p- a rr p- 3 0 3 LJ. (/] rr £ 3 3 ro c P- rr P P P- (D P CO O P Co P - p tu w ro p n 3 tu 3 to rr 3 P rr £ 3 ro 3" rr in cn n o S tu w W p 0 P1 to t- to IQ in to 3 p- (/I tu c ro P 10 3 H- Ml tu n - P Pi 3 PI ro rr tu pi to TJ iQ rr tu P p* W rr B> tu a r r r o P QJ tu 1 3 0 0 to n to 0 cn 3 cn tn W P 3 w 0 p £ 0) 3" tu rr 0- 3" C D- 3" P rr 3 0> to p- 3 3" p- p- ro p- rr in to 3 c 0 o . p- o O tu O in 0- tu 3 3 3 3 p 3 P* vQ LP oo C .— LJ C 00 C C CTl LJ ro LJ a O O - rr 3 - J o 3 r r 3 3 o O O o 3 p <*° o«= tu Ul O to tu Cn W <*° eV> to tu 3 rr rr 3 rr rr rr 3 oo CO a tu 00 tu Q. tu tu W L0 00 OO tu a rr rr 3 Oo r r 3 3 3 rr p r r rr 3 tu a P - rr tu a °-. o . tu tu tu tu p. c 3 3 tu 3 3 3 3 3 3 p. a 3 0» D. p. a to p. P —• tu 3 Q. < — O IP ro ui o p* < < CO •c. a i LJ LP < < ru < LP \D LP pi ro o 1 o 1 w ro o o» o O 1 a ro p ro O o O 3 o LP o LP p p i o o O LJ p p p- p O o O P ID t o 1 O p-i< ro o 1 1 O P'L< tu 1 c rrLn o LP O tu o + O tu CO 3 3" o o t r o o r ^ O O o p- o o- P1 • ro o o o ro o ro ' a o Z z z z Z z z z z z r< z z w p-m 3 n 0 c 3 z Z z z z z z z Z z Z >< z Z rr • o rt c ro p P ro 3 tu w P z Z z z z z z *L Z z K: >< •< £ Cl • o P 3 tu ro p. 3 t/l ro z K; •< z K z z z z z >< K; K: K: £ p-3 IQ Ol c n ro ro PJ LJ o p ro ro ro p» to o o i» o O 1 i •< o —i LJ o o o o   o  o to 00 p1 o o o o o o + o o ro + + o o to pi 0 z z z •< K K; >< l< K; 0 p D .0 P a c i z K: >< •< z Z z z z z Z ro H 300, depending on the order. F l e x i b i l i t y in the size and s t y l e of the order allows these firms to compete with foreign competitors who usually require longer runs before they accept an order: "Imports aren't r e a l l y an issue for us, you know? They only want large numbers [orders] - i t doesn't aff e c t us" (14). Though imports were s t i l l a concern for another manager, he argued, "You have to l i v e with i t . You make the things that they don't import. If you need something special or you can't wait a long time we can do i t " (5). These l a s t statements indicate what is perhaps the key to the s u r v i v a l of many smaller firms: they depend on small orders of unstandardised clothing and rapid turnaround time. Importers cannot compete because the i r response time i s slow and they depend on larger orders of standardised c l o t h i n g so that economies of scale may be real i s e d . - During the interview with one firm, the manager and I were interrupted by a customer with an order. . The exchange between the manager and the customer demonstrates admirably the nature of the market these firms serve. The conversation reproduced here i s as close as possible to verbatim: 1 18 C u s t o m e r ( C ) : We want f i v e o f t h o s e j a c k e t s l i k e y o u made f o r us l a s t y e a r . Can you do i t ? Manager(M) : , Sure how soon do you need them? C : In a few weeks . M : O . K . what s i z e s do you want? C : We want one 44 , two o f 42 , and two o f 4 0 . The 44 and one of t h e 4 2 ' s must have t h o s e d e t a c h a b l e c o l l a r t y p e t h i n g s . F o r the r e s t we want t h o s e fu r c o l l a r s . By the way how b i g i s y o u r 44 , t h i s guy pu t on a l o t o f w e i g h t r e c e n t l y . W e l l why d o e s n ' t he come i n and we c a n f i t the s i z e h e r e ? O .K w e ' l l t e l l h im t o phone you t o a r r a n g e a t i m e . Do you want the l a p e l s on the s h o u l d e r s ? I c a n ' t remember what t he o t h e r guys want so I ' l l have t o phone you l a t e r . Can you do the p o c k e t s w i t h v e l c r o ? M : A l l o f them? C : Y e s . M : O . K . , a n y t h i n g e l s e ? C : I d o n ' t t h i n k s o . M : O . K . I t h i n k t h a t ' s a l l - i f a n y t h i n g goes wrong you can a l w a y s come back f o r a l t e r a t i o n s . M : C : M : C : I n p l a c i n g the o r d e r f o r t he f i v e j a c k e t s , t h e c u s t o m e r s had t o meet the manager and d i s c u s s each one i n t u r n . A l l f i v e were e s s e n t i a l l y d i f f e r e n t and due t o c o n f u s i o n o v e r the s i z e , one o f the men w o u l d have t o 119 v i s i t the factory to be measured. This deal could not have occurred between the customers and an offshore manufacturer. Even a large l o c a l firm would be loathe to accept an order of only f i v e jackets. Local state assistance for clothing f a c t o r i e s in the c i t y i s not r e s t r i c t e d to the high p r o f i l e fashion companies. The p r o v i n c i a l government also a s s i s t s small firms, p a r t i c u l a r l y those that manufacture standardised clothing, by awarding contracts to those located in the c i t y even i f t h e i r rates are more expensive than manufacturers located in central Canada or in the Third World. In the sample of firms interviewed in the c i t y , two small survivors were partly dependent on state i n s t i t u t i o n s for orders of uniforms, work clothing and other apparel (8;14). Smaller firms seem to be more vulnerable to l o c a l market changes and recessions than larger companies which are able to penetrate new markets more e a s i l y . The cutter in one factory, explained how variable business could be: "We're doing very well now. I've never worked so hard in my l i f e . We are getting l o t s of orders. E s p e c i a l l y the club jackets and s t u f f . To think just a few years ago everyone was going broke" (5). This firm's survival strategy during the downturn in the economy in 1981/2 was to lay off labour. When times are busy, according to the manager , "we ge t more o p e r a t o r s [ i . e . women s e w e r s ] -more p e o p l e and b e t t e r p e o p l e " ( 5 ) . Y e t , s i n c e the male c u t t e r i n t e r v i e w e d has worked a t the f i r m f o r o v e r 30 y e a r s , i t appea r s t h a t a c o r e work f o r c e ( u s u a l l y male ) i s m a i n t a i n e d w h i l e a more f l e x i b l e l a b o u r f o r c e , u s u a l l y immig ran t women, a r e h i r e d or f i r e d d e p e n d i n g on economic c o n d i t i o n s . T h i s i s c o n s i s t e n t w i t h C h r i s t o p h e r s o n ' s (1987) argument about the p e r s i s t e n c e of a c o n t i n g e n t work f o r c e i n t h e U n i t e d S t a t e s . She a rgues t h a t p a r t t i m e and f l e x i b l e work c o n d i t i o n s a r e not a remnant o f an e a r l i e r i n d u s t r i a l s t a g e ; i n s t e a d , t hey a r e becoming a s t r u c t u r a l f e a t u r e of the emerg ing ' economic r e g i m e . I n t i m e s o f r e c e s s i o n or when marke t s a r e v o l a t i l e , f i r m s r e s p o n d by l a y i n g o f f t h e i r c o n t i n g e n t l a b o u r f o r c e . I n V a n c o u v e r and i n many o t h e r N o r t h A m e r i c a n c i t i e s , i m m i g r a n t women u s u a l l y domina t e t h i s l a b o u r segment ( B e e c h y , 1985; C h r i s t o p h e r s o n , 1987 ) . 4.4,New Investment A l a r g e p r o p o r t i o n o f new f i r m s o p e n i n g a p p a r e l f a c t o r i e s i n Vancouver a r e from Hong Kong ( S e l z e r , p e r s . comm. ) . T h i s i s a i n t e r e s t i n g phenomenon i n t h a t i t r e p r e s e n t s a r e v e r s a l i n t h e t r e n d towards the r e l o c a t i o n o f c l o t h i n g p r o d u c t i o n t o the T h i r d W o r l d f rom w e s t e r n 121 c a p i t a l i s t countries. It also poses serious questions concerning the theory of the New International Division of Labour, b r i e f l y discussed in chapter two. The s h i f t of c a p i t a l from Hong Kong i s partly a response to the termination of the 99 year leasehold on the country from; China in 1997. Chinese takeover of Hong Kong has worried many businesspeople who have preferred to transfer their c a p i t a l rather than r i s k losing i t under a new p o l i t i c a l regime. Although the Chinese government has promised c a p i t a l i s t s in Hong Kong that very l i t t l e w i l l change, many have decided to move their operations to Canada. There are a number of other factors which have attracted Hong Kong investment to Canada as opposed to some other western c a p i t a l i s t country. What has perhaps attracted investors most are the new business immigration p o l i c i e s , introduced by the L i b e r a l government in 1978. The 'Entrepreneur Programme' requires that a new investor have a net worth of at least $500,000, has a successful history of business ventures and plans to make a s i g n i f i c a n t investment in Canada. Once these guidelines are met, the immigrant is e l i g i b l e for landed immigrant status. Controversy surrounded the implementation of the new p o l i c i e s , p a r t i c u l a r l y when i t was discovered that the immigration department did not monitor whether the investors had followed through with t h e i r stated plans (Malarek, 1987). In some cases, for example, i t was 1 22 revealed that individuals who had intended to set up a manufacturing plant had instead opened a r e t a i l store. Despite these problems, in 1986 under a new federal government, the business immigration laws were extended to a t t r a c t even more wealthy investors. The new 'Investors Programme' s t i l l requires that business immigrants have a net worth of $500,000 and are able to show they have a certa i n business acumen. At the same time, however, the minimum investment is set at $250,000, they must employ at least one Canadian and their venture must take advantage of resources and markets in the country. This new programme is also f l e x i b l e in that the owner of the new venture need not run i t him/herself (Malarek, 1987). Though the laws are federally c o n t r o l l e d , the B r i t i s h Columbian government has played an active role in encouraging entrepreneurs to invest in the province through free counselling and information services in o f f i c e s located a l l over the world, including Hong Kong ( B r i t i s h Columbia Ministry of Economic Development, - "Business immigration", ED/01/87). The p r o v i n c i a l government has also been proud to display i t s . success s t o r i e s , one of which i s a sportswear clot h i n g company. This firm has invested in "state-of-the-art computerised sewing equipment and eventually plans to transfer much of i t s Hong Kong apparel business to Vancouver" ( B r i t i s h Columbia Ministry of Economic Development, "A guide to 123 business immigration", September, 1987; p. 9). Si g n i f i c a n t in the firm's choice to locate in Vancouver, as opposed to another larger clothing centre in Canada, i s the "good labour pool to draw from" (ibid.). Another Hong Kong investor had researched his decision to locate in Vancouver rather more c a r e f u l l y : "Lo went to Toronto and Montreal. He found that wages for garment workers in Vancouver are 25 to 30 per cent less, although he i s quick to add that most of his employees earn between f i v e and six d o l l a r s an hour—well above the minimum wage" {Equity, July/August, 1988, p. 72, emphasis added). Second, clothing manufacturers have been attracted by the large North American market. Increasing protectionism has made i t d i f f i c u l t for apparel firms exporting from Hong Kong to penetrate the US and Canadian markets suc c e s s f u l l y . Import quotas for firms that have had agreements with Canada for many years, such as Hong Kong, are becoming less l i b e r a l each year, as governments attempt to protect domestic manufacturers. They have also had d i f f i c u l t y competing in the lucrative fashion end of the market where value added is higher than in standardised c l o t h i n g . As discussed in chapter three, manufacturers in Hong Kong and Taiwan have problems competing with the long lead times inevitably associated with producing offshore. According to the manager of a 1 24 firm who recently set up a factory in Vancouver: We have a l o t of customers on the West Coast and in the Far East we have quota r e s t r i c t i o n s . We can accept a l o t more orders being here in Canada. Customers want us to be here - they f e e l they have closer contact with us and they can control production better (12). Locating closer to the . market i s therefore doubly advantageous: they can compete in the high end of the market and they are exempt from t a r i f f s and quotas. With the proposed US Canada Free Trade Agreement, manufacturers in Canada w i l l also have free access to the huge US market. According to a government representative, seventeen manufacturers from Hong Kong have set up factories in Vancouver in the last year (Selzer, 1987). Part of the explanation for firms locating in Vancouver, rather than one of the larger clothing centres in c e n t r a l Canada has been the active role of the p r o v i n c i a l government in encouraging new investment. One aspect of the government's role has been sending o f f i c i a l s to Hong Kong pointing out the strengths of Vancouver which are, in their opinion, access to a s k i l l e d , d o c i l e work force and large markets (Selzer, 1987). Workers in Vancouver are 125 r a c i a l l y stereotyped as "Orientals who are by t r a d i t i o n very adept and dexterous; two very key elements in the production of clothing" (Selzer, 1987; p. 10). One firm that recently arrived was grateful for the assistance they received from the p r o v i n c i a l government: The [provincial] government has been quite h e l p f u l to us - they supplied us with information about the labour. The thing is the workers aren't s k i l l e d to world standards and they l e t us bring in our own supervisor to t r a i n the labour how to work (12). The labour force in Vancouver may have played a role in the location decisions of some Hong Kong clothing firms in other ways too. Not only do the wages seem lower in the c i t y , as discussed above, but potential investors in Hong Kong are usually informed that, the garment unionised work force in B r i t i s h Columbia i s stable and peaceful...A study of i n d u s t r i a l relations in the province indicates that where labour disputes have occurred they tend to be primarily focused in resource based industries (forestry/mining) or in the public sector--teachers and nursing s t a f f . Our records show that there have been no I abour disputes in the garment industry or in secondary manufacturing generally (Selzer, 1987, p. 3; emphasis added). Another of the newly arrived firms, also from Hong Kong, contracts work from other firms and r e t a i l outlets. Int e r e s t i n g l y , the company manufactures for many of the same firms i t had dealt with while located in Hong Kong. 1 Now, however, the firm i s able to subcontract for fashion clothing r e t a i l e r s or other manufacturers, and can guarantee rapid turnaround. The new company i s also planning to manufacture i t s own fashion l i n e s in the very near future. Their designer had recently t r a v e l l e d to Hong Kong to obtain ideas for new fashions, which she w i l l adapt for the North American market: "I (the designer) go to Hong Kong and get the designs and make them into Canadian designs. I have to change them because they are too fashionable for the women here. Also the sizes are d i f f e r e n t " (6). Proximity to the market has allowed t h i s company to compete in fashion c l o t h i n g , previously d i f f i c u l t when the firm was located in Hong Kong. A second firm in the sample was established by a multi-national clothing manufacturer with headquarters in Hong Kong. Production i s geared to fashionable, though standardised, clothing under labels l i k e Polo and Yves Saint-Laurent. Their operation i s close to the mass production model dominant in the Fordist regime, having recently invested in computerised sewing machines to speed up s p e c i f i c work processes rather than to improve o v e r a l l f l e x i b i l i t y (Equity, July/August, 1988). Other methods used by the firm to improve turnaround time are also more 127 c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of Fordist production: We improve turnaround time by adding new machines and more labour. It gives us more control in speeding up the production process. We also have to plan the organisation of work very c a r e f u l l y . A certain procedure might take too long and i t holds up the entire process. Then the rest don't have any work to do - th i s costs us money. So we plan ahead and hire more labour and subcontract or do overtime - th i s helps us speed production (12). This statement demonstrates that the manager i s interested in maintaining a continuous flow of production, while f l e x i b i l i t y in terms of design i s r e a l l y not a concern. It i s also evident from the quote that he uses a contingent labour force, h i r i n g when orders are large and demand i s strong. New investment from Hong Kong to Canada in the clo t h i n g industry has important implications for theories predicting the long term relocation of manufacturing to the Third World. Frobel et al's (1980) theory of the New International Division of Labour i s perhaps the most widely c i t e d attempt to explain t h i s phenomenon. In essence, the theory i s concerned with the process by which products are standardised and tasks are fragmented into l e s s s k i l l e d work. To take advantage of unskilled and cheap labour in the Third World, factories relocate away from advanced c a p i t a l i s t countries where wages are higher. The NIDL theory, c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of a genre of l i t e r a t u r e which focuses on cheap labour as the primary motivation for the relocation of production to the Third World, sees the s h i f t as a long term process in the evolution of capitalism. However, new investment in Vancouver by clothing firms, previously located in Hong Kong i s a response to the quest for access to new markets, rather than simply a question of cheap labour. Although at a national l e v e l the labour force in Vancouver i s important, proximity to the market i s the most important factor in the high value-added fashion industry where demand i s unstable. 4.5 Conclusion Though unsuccessful in stemming the l e v e l of import penetration, t a r i f f s have played a role in Vancouver's garment industry. New investment by Hong Kong firms i s in part a response to the r e s t r i c t i o n s imposed by the Canadian state. The s h i f t of c a p i t a l from a newly-i n d u s t r i a l i s i n g nation to a member country of the OECD, has important th e o r e t i c a l implications. It i s becoming evident that cheaper wages i s not the only reason for the relocation of manufacturing companies (Gordon, 1988). Smaller firms have also benefitted from the t a r i f f s , although they generally serve a market based on small orders of unstandardised clothing, one which i s generally not suited to the a b i l i t i e s of offshore manufacturers. F l e x i b i l i t y for these firms i s not gained through new technology; instead, they rely on a 'contingent' female immigrant labour force to weather downturns in the economy. In the clothing industry this method i s not new and has been used by owners since women have worked on the shop floor of apparel f a c t o r i e s . 1 30 CHAPTER V Immigrant labour i n Vancouver's c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y If i t weren't for immigrant labour the industry would die (ACTWU).1 5.1 I n t r o d u c t i o n Immigrants in North America have dominated the clothing industry as owners or workers for much of i t s history; immigrant women and men formed the basis of the clothing sector in New York (Weiner and Green, 1984; Waldinger, 1986), Toronto (Hiebert, 1987), Montreal (Lipsig-Mumme, 1987), and Los Angeles (Soja, Morales, and Wolff, 1987). Control of the industry by a single ethnic group has not, however, always persisted: in New.York, for example, Jewish immigrants were owners and workers in the f i r s t half of the century while in the 1980s the industry i s . increasingly c o n t r o l l e d by Chinese and Hispanic immigrants (Waldinger, 1986). 1 These acronyms in brackets refer to the interview with the unions, i . e . ACTWU i s the Amalgamated Clothing and Te x t i l e Workers Union; ILGWU i s the International Ladies Garment Workers Union; and UGWA i s the United Garment Workers Union. 131 In Vancouver, the ethnic composition of the work force has also shifted between dif f e r e n t immigrant workers over time. During the 1950s the booming industry depended mainly on I t a l i a n men and women workers. I t a l i a n men, usually trained as t a i l o r s prior to their a r r i v a l , came to control the more highly s k i l l e d jobs in the factory, such as cutting, marking, grading and pressing. Although men from other ethnic groups have captured the s k i l l e d positions since the 1950s, many I t a l i a n men continue to work in the industry. The number of men employed in a ty p i c a l clothing factory in the c i t y i s , however, far less than the number of women. I t a l i a n women, subject to the gender d i v i s i o n of labour on the shop f l o o r , were sewing machine operators or f i n i s h e r s . However, they were largely replaced during the 1960s by immigrants from mainland China. Since then, Chinese women have become the backbone of the industry in Vancouver, accounting for some 90 per cent of the female employees in the cl o t h i n g sector (Keynon, 1986). The remaining ten per cent i s lar g e l y made up of East Indian, Vietnamese and Portuguese women. In t h i s chapter, three issues are analysed: the dynamic of how Chinese immigrant women have come to dominate sewing positions in Vancouver's c l o t h i n g industry; the strength of unions in the c i t y and how t h i s i s mediated by employers and to a lesser extent the state; 132 and f i n a l l y t he e x p e r i e n c e of C h i n e s e women w o r k e r s i n the i n d u s t r y . E m p i r i c a l m a t e r i a l i s drawn from i n t e r v i e w s w i t h women w o r k e r s , most o f who were employed i n f a c t o r i e s w i t h o u t f l e x i b l e e q u i p m e n t , u n i o n o f f i c i a l s and e m p l o y e r s . P u b l i s h e d s o u r c e s a r e a l s o used t o compare and c o n t r a s t t he e x p e r i e n c e o f C h i n e s e women i n Vancouver w i t h c o n d i t i o n s f o r w o r k e r s i n a p p a r e l s e c t o r s i n o t h e r c i t i e s . 5.2 Entering the Secondary Labour Market N g ' s (1986) r e s e a r c h s u g g e s t s t h a t immigran t women " . . . c o m e t o be c o n s t i t u t e d as a v i s i b l e s o c i a l c a t e g o r y . . . " t h r o u g h v a r i o u s s t a t e and p r i v a t e i n s t i t u t i o n s i n s o c i e t y ( p . 2 6 9 ) . In he r case s t u d y she examined t h e way a j o b p l acemen t c e n t r e d i r e c t e d immig ran t women t o work i n t h e s e c o n d a r y l a b o u r marke t i n a r e a s such as c l o t h i n g , o t h e r downgraded m a n u f a c t u r i n g i n d u s t r i e s , and the s e r v i c e s e c t o r . In Vancouver an immigran t s u p p o r t g r o u p , MOSAIC, i s a l s o i n v o l v e d i n r e p r o d u c i n g the segmented l a b o u r marke t by t e a c h i n g i m m i g r a n t s E n g l i s h and sewing s k i l l s i n the same c o u r s e ( C h i a n g , p e r s . comm., 1988 ) . I n t h i s p r o c e s s t h e i r immig ran t s t a t u s i s l i n k e d w i t h the t y p e o f work t h e y a r e e x p e c t e d t o f i n d . Newly a r r i v e d i m m i g r a n t s , eager t o l e a r n E n g l i s h , a r e i m m e d i a t e l y ' d e f i n e d ' , i n N g ' s t e r m s , i n t o the s e c o n d a r y 133 market. With the continuous a r r i v a l of immigrants to the c i t y , clothing factories are ensured a steady supply of labour. Beginning in the" 1970s, these English/sewing courses were provided by the state in Vancouver (see also • Pollak, 1988): I went to the YWCA to a government sponsored programme to teach immigrants English and how to sew. They paid me 40 doll a r s a week. They also helped me find a job. I had no experience in the trade and the course was 4 hours sewing and 4 hours learning English. I was a school teacher in Hong Kong before I came here (Lee). 2 Another woman interviewed had o f f i c e s k i l l s from her country of or i g i n and was fluent in English, but in Vancouver she was unable to use these s k i l l s because of the questions on the job placement form: When I went to manpower I to l d them I worked in an o f f i c e back home. They just ask you 'Do you have any Canadian experience?' So I couldn't get an o f f i c e job (Law). This woman's lack of Canadian experience l e f t her l i t t l e option but to take a job in a clo t h i n g factory, a problem among Chinese immigrants. More commonly, however, immigrants are barred from a l l but the service sector and 2 These names refer to women who were interviewed and are f i c t i t i o u s . 1 34 manufacturing work because they lack language s k i l l s : What can they do r ight? That 's what I mean. They come from China they don't speak Engl i sh and they just t e l l you what to sew and you just sew (Daisy) . I was happy to f ind the job. I d idn' t have any choices; i t seemed secure without having E n g l i s h , I d i d n ' t have the language. They treated me O.K. but I remember o t h e r s . . . [ s h e remembers others who weren't treated that wel l in the factory] (Eng). They just walk off the s treet and get h i r e d . They don't speak the language. . .you don't need to know E n g l i s h to read the patterns (ACTWU). The woman's income in an immigrant household i s v i t a l for the s u r v i v a l of the family . In the interviews, myths about secondary income sources ( i . e . the 'p in money' theory) were d i s p e l l e d : When I came I d idn ' t want to work as a sewer for too long . I had four kids and with r e l a t i v e s there are eight of us. We r e a l l y needed fast money. My husband found a job as a welder. But i t was s t a r t i n g from scratch and i t wasn't very s table (Law). What my husband makes i s good enough just to l i v e . We need my money for the kids (Jay) . 1 35 One of the woman interviewed was w i l l i n g to endure harsher working conditions in a more modern factory only because the wages were higher: At the f i r s t place I worked they didn't have any benefits. And no wage increases, not even one cent; that's why I didn't want to work there. In three years we got no raise - i t just stayed at three d o l l a r s an hour - i t was minimum wage at the time. But the work was easy there. That's why I l e f t , though, because of the money. In the job I have now the work i s r e a l l y hard, but the pay i s better. You see at the old factory they had old machines. But in the place that I'm at now i t has a new machine and they are much faster (Jay). As Chinese immigrants have come to dominate sewing jobs in the apparel industry in Vancouver, job search strategies have become increasingly informal. Family or community networks are often used to secure employment: "I f i r s t went to my aunt to ask her then I went around with my cousin. You know we just went door to door" (Daisy). In the interviews with women operators, i t seemed that they usually had l i t t l e d i f f i c u l t y in finding employment in the clothing industry as long as the economy i s healthy. One of the women interviewed had taken a course in sewing in Hong Kong before she l e f t for Vancouver. Two weeks after having arrived in the c i t y she had secured employment in a clothing firm. Part of the reason that Chinese women find work r e l a t i v e l y e a s i l y i s because of thei r reputation. Both employers and union o f f i c i a l s regard Chinese immigrant women as in some way et h n i c a l l y 1 36 superior; a sample of the comments from a some of the managers and union o f f i c i a l s i s reproduced below-: The Chinese are hard workers - i t is a positi v e aspect - they do a good job and are f a i r l y conscientious.(3) The Chinese are more r e l i a b l e - they are w i l l i n g to take the job. We advertise through the Chinese newspaper too.(4) We have a Chinese labour force - they have a very good work ethic, they are experienced, dependable and they show up for work.(11) I t s a c u l t u r a l thing, you know, they just work harder.(4) They [East Indian women] won't take over from the Chinese. They are a l o t more e f f i c i e n t than the East Indians (UGWA). Although most of the comments focussed on the c u l t u r a l aspects of their work ethic, a few were more bla t a n t l y r a c i s t : The Chinese have the expertise, manual dexterity, a t t i t u d i n a l persuasion, and i t s a secondary income source and with language problems they can s t i l l do i t . A big part i s the physical aptitude - their hands are fine boned and they can work around sewing machines. In other workers i t s not there (7) (my .emphasis). It was easier to fin d Chinese people. By word of mouth you know. And they are very good operators. They are trained a l l day long without going to the bathroom - you know they are very hard workers (UGWA). 137 Not a l l manufacturers or union o f f i c i a l s argued that the Chinese were in some way g e n e t i c a l l y superior, and one of the union o f f i c i a l s contended that t h e i r work ethic could be explained by t h e i r circumstances in a new country: They're not working because they want to - i t s a must for them - i t s not the case that they can stay at home - they must leave the home to survive (ILGWU). One manager of an apparel firm was shocked and affronted when I informed her of the opinions of other owners in the c i t y . She rejected the r a c i a l superiority argument: Sure the labour force i s absolutely c r i t i c a l -we have a very high labour content in our work. But I wouldn't make any r a c i a l l y oriented comments (9) . A business agent from one of the unions also seemed to hold the view that the Chinese were superior sewing machine operators. His response to why Chinese immigrant women had replaced I t a l i a n women in the 1960s was the following: -Due to a large influx of Chinese in the 60s and 70s - they are widely used. Most Chinese women know how to sew - they have the patience. The Ita l i a n s don't stay as long (ACTWU). 1 38 Interestingly, his assistant who was Chinese responded to his comments: "I'm Chinese and I don't have any patience and I can't sew either. I couldn't do that work (laughs)" (ACTWU). When the pace of work determines the wage, as i s the case with piece rates, Chinese immigrant women have the reputation of being hard workers. However, in other wage payment schemes not linkede to output, the same women seem w i l l i n g to forego their reputation. One owner explained how she would have to deal with the sloth of her employees: They're l i k e molasses on time work. We've hired an accountant to set up an incentive scheme [piece r a t e s ] . It w i l l decrease the labour costs by up to 50 per cent (9). Chinese immigrants were also hired more readi l y because employers were under the impression that they were already s k i l l e d sewers, or had been while in China or Hong Kong. Two women interviewed did have sewing experience from their country of o r i g i n which made i t easier for them to f i n d a job in the clothing industry: I can't do any other work you know? In Burma I learnt how to sew in a factory (Jay). 139 One woman prepared for her a r r i v a l in Vancouver where her husband had t o l d her she could find a job in a sewing factory: I learnt how to sew in Hong Kong. My husband to l d me that t h i s was where Chinese people could get jobs. So I took a course in Hong Kong before I got here. He was right because I got the job two weeks afte r I arrived.(Eng) However, not a l l Chinese women learn how to sew in the home or in their country of o r i g i n : y I didn't know how to sew. I wasn't a sewer back home [China]. When you are on a power machine, you r e a l l y have to go (Law). No I couldn't sew. I never had a machine at home (Daisy). A l l the employers interviewed stressed how loyal Chinese women were despite the sweatshop conditions described by a few union o f f i c i a l s . This was how one o f f i c i a l described some of the f a c t o r i e s : Some of them have worked for over fiv e years and they s t i l l only earn $4.50 and hour (minimum wage i s $4.25). They [managers] p i t worker against worker and r e a l l y exploit the people. If people stand up for their rights and f a c i l i t i e s etc. they are isolated or are f i r e d or they just q u i t . They [owners] don't want more leaders (ILGWU). Wages in the majority of shops are minimum. In unionised shops wages are higher but not very high. Piecework is a demanding way of getting people to work to the l i m i t (ILGWU). There are s t i l l horror stories - the fact that they question women going to the bathroom, a l l the old methods way back when. You wouldn't believe you're in the 80s (ILGWU). In spite of claims that they are 'suited' to the work, the women interviewed found the work very d e b i l i t a t i n g . One woman who had recently suffered a stroke mentioned piece rates as a contributing factor to her condition: There i s so much competition [with piece rates] and the work i s too hard. If I went back now I don't think I could work. They have to do th e i r best to stay (Daisy). They gave me a sample to test me. They try to make sure how straight you could do i t . They don't pay you at f i r s t . If you're good they give you the better jobs later (Daisy) . In recent years, feminist scholars have argued that in any explanation of the labour market po s i t i o n and experience of women workers, their domestic l i v e s must be considered. In Vancouver, despite the r a c i a l l y based ideas on the superiority of Chinese immigrants in the garment industry and their l o y a l t y at work, the i r work experience i s mediated by the i r status as women and immigrants in Canada. Ar r i v i n g with children and very 141 l i t t l e money, many are forced to restructure their l i v e s so that one member of the family i s at home a l l of the time: I was working 8 hours a day. my husband i s at home then and he looked af t e r the kids. Then he works at night and I look af t e r the kids. Those times were r e a l l y tough - i t s not easy l i k e i t is now (reference to daughter who i s at university) (Daisy). Our house was a good location and my grandfather l i v e d in the house too. It was close to the factory. I sometimes worked overtime and my husband worked the graveyard s h i f t (Eng). When the family cannot support the women at home by caring for the children many are forced into an alternative arrangement: My mother in law was looking after the kids but then she got sick. I had to quit my job and go home. I worked at home [homework] so I could look a f t e r the chi l d r e n (Jay). In the face of poor conditions in some factories in the c i t y , Chinese immigrant women have had d i f f i c u l t y in seeking out support from the clothing unions in Vancouver. Part of the reason i s that they do not have the time to become involved in the union, working at the factory and 142 at home: They have no time for the union - they f i n i s h work and they buy the vegetables, they have to cook for their kids (ACTWU). Others are intimidated by the fact that t h e i r English may not be adequate. In addition, unions have been hampered by anti-union t a c t i c s by the state and the factory owners. However, problems in representing women, who comprise the majority of workers in the industry, have also stemmed from the internal structure of the unions themselves. 5.3 Unions In Vancouver, unions made their presence f e l t in the 1950s when new clothing factories were being established in large numbers in the c i t y . By 1955, when the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU) announced a major organising drive across Canada, a substantial, though unspecified, percentage of the $100,000 dedicated to the drive was spent in Vancouver, where the le v e l of unionisation was v i r t u a l l y n i l (Province, 16/9/1955; Vancouver Sun, 11/7/1955). During 143 the. years following the commencement of the drive, at least 12 f a c t o r i e s were organised by the union (Labour Statesman, 31/9/1955). Indeed, the ILGWU had more agreements with f a c t o r i e s in the 1950s than i t has currently in the c i t y (Labour Statesman, 31/7/1956). In the early 1960s, another union, the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America (ACWA), became involved in Vancouver in an attempt to ameliorate 'sweatshop' conditions and wage rates which were far below the statutory minimum (Trevor, 1962). However, due to resistance on the part of employers, ACWA was only successful in organising a few f a c t o r i e s and they no longer have a l o c a l in the . c i t y (ibid.). . ' In the period since the early 1960s, unions have not managed to organise a substantial section of the work force in Vancouver. In fact, i t was t h i r t y years before the ILGWU attempted another, organising drive (Vancouver Sun, 31/5/1985). Part of the explanation for the weakness of the unions l i e s in the v o l a t i l i t y of the industry in the face of foreign competition. Manufacturers in Canada, affected by cheap imports, have resorted to restructuring the shop f l o o r to reduce labour costs or have relocated to the Third World in search of cheaper labour. Threatening to close down or move offshore has been used as a bargaining t o o l by owners seeking to offset the "high 144 costs of unionisation" (Lipsig-Mumme, 1987). In Vancouver these threats are not always i d l e : Companies don't want to unionise - they intimidate the workers. Or they threaten that t h e y ' l l close the place down. One company wanted to cut wages by 25 per cent. The members refused and demanded an increase. It didn't matter because the company closed down anyway (ACTWU). In central Canada, the combined e f f e c t of restructuring and the growing anti-union campaign by employers have had a major impact on the membership of the largest union in the region, the ILGWU. Lipsig-Mumme (1987) argues that between 1976 and 1985 the union l o s t over 10,000 members in Montreal and a substantial amount of bargaining power due to the closing down of f a c t o r i e s and the move to homework. In B r i t i s h Columbia, where garment unions have also had d i f f i c u l t i e s organising f a c t o r i e s , anti-union l e g i s l a t i o n i s l i k e l y to further r e s t r i c t their actions. The ILGWU l o c a l in Vancouver was dismayed by the passage of B i l l 19, which allows clothing firms to break union contracts by c l o s i n g and re-opening "across the street" (Vancouver S u n , 15/7/1987). Unions in the clothing industry were also concerned over section 25 of the B i l l which permits unionised firms to open non-unionised subsidiaries, an i l l e g a l practice under the older labour laws. These t a c t i c s which have been used occasionally by clothing companies in the past, are l e g i t i m i s e d with the new l e g i s l a t i o n creating further problems for organising the apparel industry work force. The three l o c a l s currently in the c i t y are a f f i l i a t e d with the International Ladies Garment Workers Union (ILGWU), the American Clothing and Textile Workers Union (ACTWU) and the United Garment Workers of America (UGWA). A l l three unions receive d i r e c t i o n from headquarters in the United States. With just over 10 of the estimated 80 firms in the c i t y organised, unions blame employers with anti-union t a c t i c s for the i r lack of success. Intimidation was an issue raised during an interview with a union representative who recounted two f a i l e d attempts at c e r t i f y i n g f a c t o r i e s . They are intimidated - they f e e l they have to be l o y a l . You can organise sometimes but to get a c o l l e c t i v e agreement...(shakes her _ head). Marjorie Hamilton - we started in 1985 ^  and i t was only in September 1987 that we got c e r t i f i c a t i o n . Only three months later they took a d e c e r t i f i c a t i o n vote. When we voted for c e r t i f i c a t i o n 219 workers voted. When we d e c e r t i f i e d only 120 showed up. Only t h i r t y per cent of them were union members. The employer was 'able' to get them to dece r t i f y (ILGWU). 3 See Vancouver Sun, 31/5/1985 1 46 Snazzie - we got c e r t i f i c a t i o n but shit i t was close. Then the company turned around and promised the workers higher wages and t o l d them to d e c e r t i f y . There was a l e t t e r in t h e i r pay packets. On the 17th we had our l a s t meeting and on the 18th they got t h e i r l e t t e r . Then we went around the factory with the wage proposal.^ They threw i t in the bin and d e c e r t i f i e d : they were promised a bigger wage i f they d e c e r t i f i e d . The information we are getting now i s that there was no r a i s e . They're s t i l l on base rate [minimum wage]. (ILGWU) The effect of the f a i l u r e s was disastrous on the ILGWU which had spent a great deal of money attempting to c e r t i f y these f a c t o r i e s . According to one of the other unions, t h i s setback seriously affected the ILGWU's a b i l i t y to apply for more funds from the national executive for future organising drives (ACTWU). It might also explain why the ILGWU organiser informed me that she was waiting for the Canada-US Free Trade agreement to pass before she would attempt to c e r t i f y another factory. The organiser at the UGWA also mentioned intimidation as a problem in organising workers: Sometimes they [Chinese workers] are scared: 'am I going to get f i r e d i f I j o i n the union?'. The managers scare them (UGWA). 4 See Vancouver Sun, 16/9/1987 Employers sometimes play on the immigrant status of women and one woman mentioned her fear of being deported as a factor in her deciding not to sign the membership card, even though she was a legal landed immigrant: When the union came outside the doors trying to get the people to sign the cards the manager said i f you sign you are f i r e d . - People were very scared. We were scared of getting shipped out [back to Hong Kong](Eng). Union o f f i c i a l s , at the same time are frustrated with the lack of militancy of the immigrant women. Responding to a question on problems in organisation, one union organiser said simply: "They aren't trouble makers - they are chickenshit" (ACTWU). It also appears that they are less r e s i s t a n t that workers elsewhere in Canada:^ People from Eastern (sic) Canada are always in an uproar. Here the people are much more quiet. In Toronto there the people are r e a l l y stronger. I don't know i f i t ' s because they have more whites or i t might be because of a d i f f e r e n t culture - I don't know what i t i s . I went to go to talk to one of the committees and I found i t completely d i f f e r e n t . Here they l i s t e n to you and you explain and there you find they just scream at you. They are real fighters (UGWA). 5 See also Serafin, 1985. Biased labour l e g i s l a t i o n , resistance on the part of factory owners, and the precarious .nature of the industry are the main reasons why unions have had problems in organising workers in the cl o t h i n g industry. These factors are responsible for the 'corporatist' or business unionist attitude where unions seem to side with management rather than with workers. However, secondary l i t e r a t u r e on the garment sector in other Canadian centres, the United States and the United Kingdom suggests that there are other factors involved in the weakness of apparel unions. Lipsig-Mumme1s (1987) argument based on Montreal's garment industry, for example, i d e n t i f i e s problems in the role of union leadership - which has usually been male, even though only around 12% of the union membership i s male. She argues that women have been, and continue to be, under-represented because they are employed in less s k i l l e d and more insecure positions in the factory. Moving in and out of employment, they have been unable to secure positions in the union, which regards them as dependents earning a secondary income. In addition, many immigrant women do not remain for long periods of time in the industry and are replaced by more recent immigrant groups. Men, on the other hand, whose work experience i s usually more secure, have access to the senior union positions. As evidence of male control, Lipsig-Mumme shows how since 1910 in the ILGWU, no woman has ever held the o f f i c e of the president, the secretary treasurer or the executive secretary (Lipsig-Mumme, 1987, p. 52). This gender bias has meant that union p o l i c i e s are sometimes geared towards the needs of men rather than the seemingly more pressing needs of women (Arnopolous, 1979). Gannage's (1986) discussion of the union pension plan i s an example of how p o l i c i e s are drawn up without p r i o r thought to how they a f f e c t women on the shop f l o o r . In the Toronto union, the pension plan came into e f f e c t once a worker had been a member of the union for twenty years, ten of these twenty years consecutively. The plan i s biased against women whose work experience i s often broken by family r e s p o n s i b i l i t i e s . A second example occurred in Montreal, where a union did not respond to fai n t i n g s p e l l s suffered by women on the shop floor (Montreal Gazette, 4/4/1987). In these two examples, the union seemed unaware of the position of women. Cockburn (1985), Lipsig-Mumme (1987) and Coyle (1982), however, argue that male leadership has also allowed men to secure and entrench s k i l l e d work in the factory. H i s t o r i c a l l y in Vancouver, male leadership also appears to have played a role in the strength of clothing 150 unions: ...they were big, heavy men, these union reps, men who wore neckties, and they didn't go into the shops except to talk to management. As a res u l t , the contracts they arranged were weak, and written in a language incomprehensible to the workers they were supposed to represent (Serafin, 1985, p. 4). However, in Vancouver, as in other c i t i e s , the growing r e a l i s a t i o n that women organisers are more sensitive to women's needs in the cl o t h i n g industry, i s re f l e c t e d in the changing leadership of the unions. The ILGWU is now t o t a l l y controlled by women, at least at the l o c a l l e v e l , and during the l a t t e r stages of the research, the male representative at the ACTWU was suspended and control of the union now rests in the hands of women. The UGWA, on the other hand, i s s t i l l c o n t r o l l e d by a male who had been an employee in a factory in the c i t y . ^ Although his views are not d e f i n i t i v e evidence that male controlled unions in the clothing industry are weaker and less e f f e c t i v e in representing female workers, i t i s interesting that his comments were more 'corporatist' than was the case in the 6 This was one of the three f a c t o r i e s he organised in Vancouver 151 other two unions: But you have to be reasonable with the company. They are our bread and butter. If the unions get too big ' they forget that the company i s putting the food on their plate (UGWA). He also simply did not have the time to organise any more than three f a c t o r i e s : I wouldn't try to organise a shop right now. It means a l o t of running around. Once you s t a r t you have to see i t through. Before there were only a few unions...now i t s l i k e wolves t r y i n g to get the factory (UGWA). It was also clear how as an I t a l i a n he was f i n d i n g i t more d i f f i c u l t to represent the new generation of women workers in the c i t y : When I f i r s t started 24 years ago, i t was a l l I t a l i a n women. Now i t s more d i f f i c u l t to organise with the Chinese - they are the majority, at least 70 per cent (UGWA). However, as discussed above, the gender biased leadership in some clothing unions i s only one factor contributing to business unionism in these organisations. The ILGWU, for example, unsuccessful with i t s costly 1985 union drive due to anti-union 7 By th i s he implied that some unions demanded too much of employers 1 52 ta c t i c s by employers, apparently has i n s u f f i c i e n t funds to organise any more f a c t o r i e s . In the ILGWU and the ACTWU in Vancouver, the changing work force was r e f l e c t e d in a number of Chinese speaking women in the organisations. This i s central in overcoming some of the language barriers which have been documented in secondary l i t e r a t u r e on the clothing industry (Coyle, 1982; Gannage, 1986). Union drive pamphlets, new negotiations and newsletters are now printed in English and in Chinese by the ACTWU (ACTWU). The changes in the union leadership and the h i r i n g of Chinese women in the union are important steps in ensuring that unions are better able to represent immigrant women on the shop floor of clothi n g f a c t o r i e s in Vancouver. 5 .4 Worker Response Once a factory i s organised, according to union o f f i c i a l s , immigrant women Usually welcome the changes with the negotiation of a contract. The workers f e e l pretty good about the union usually - they benefit d e f i n i t e l y . There are a lot of immigrants but they f e e l intimidated - i f they f e e l the union i s there they feel comfortable (UGWA). However, workers seem to view the success of unions somewhat more ambiguously: When I f i r s t started there was no union, no medical or anything. When the union came we got the medical. There wasn't holiday or any benefits. The only time you get off i s when somebody in the family dies. You have to wait for somebody to die before you get a day o f f ! (laughs)(Eng). When we have a problem we go to the union. Sometimes they l i s t e n sometimes they don't. There's nothing we can do--we can't f i g h t . We need the job ( I r i n a ) . Even when the union appeared to have gained a wage increase in the negotiations one woman was s t i l l u n s a t i s f i e d : The union did good we kept getting annual increases. But they might have been helping the managers. We demand f i f t e e n percent increase and they would only give us 7.5 %. They were a b i t on the managers side. If they ask for 15 per cent they should get i t . We pay the union dues; we should get what we want (Eng). In spite of changes in two of the union organisations in Vancouver, women workers s t i l l have d i f f i c u l t y voicing their opinions and needs. Many have no time to become involved because they work in the factory and at home (the double day, Gannage, 1986). For many women, without recourse to collective action, their resistance appears to have taken an individualised form. Some women simply avoid s t r e s s f u l s i t u a t i o n s at work: They treated me O.K. but I remember others...I didn't take part in the hassles. Luckily in my job there wasn't the competition [piece rates]. You know you hear 'so and so is getting l a i d o f f . I didn't want to get involved (Eng). Another woman resorted to leaving factories with poor conditions. In the l a s t ten years she had worked at 11 d i f f e r e n t firms; she l e f t three because of poor wages, four were located too far from her home, in another three she described the conditions as poor, and only one closed down. According to a union representative many women leave the garment industry for other less s t r e s s f u l jobs or work hard enough so that they would never have to work in the industry again: Some work u n t i l they can get schooling and then they are out of the industry - they use the industry for jobs but they don't stay (ILGWU). if A l l of these women dealt with the poor working conditions in an i n d i v i d u a l i s e d way, a response to the lack of representation in the unions. This type of resistance has been documented by Hoel (1982) in her research on the c l o t h i n g industry in England. For men on 1 55 the shop f l o o r , weaker unions or unions c o n t r o l l e d by women may mean that they w i l l be r e l a t i v e l y unprotected from the new technology which i s having more serious implications for their work. These issues are dealt with in more d e t a i l in chapter six which addresses f l e x i b l e manufacturing in Vancouver's clothing industry. 156 5.5 Conclusion The reputation Chinese women have earned i s not due to some inherent c u l t u r a l or physical c h a r a c t e r i s t i c which makes them suited to the grueling conditions in a clothing factory. Instead, l i k e other immigrants, their income is v i t a l to the sur v i v a l of the family economy after their a r r i v a l Canada. The women are also concerned to ensure that t h e i r c h i l d r e n , as second generation immigrants, do not suffer in the same way they did. Perhaps the clearest example of how thei r reputation was not a c u l t u r a l t r a i t was the comment of one employer who paid workers on an hourly basis and complained that they were as 'slow as molasses'. The Chinese immigrant's commitment to the family, combined with problems with the English language, has presented problems for unions organising the industry. Unions have also had d i f f i c u l t i e s organising f a c t o r i e s in the c i t y in the face of anti-union state l e g i s l a t i o n , employers attempting to avoid the 'high costs' of unionisation, and the precarious nature of the industry. Their problems are, however, internal to the union too: one union in Vancouver was cont r o l l e d by an I t a l i a n male in an industry dominated by Chinese women workers. The organiser.of t h i s union held r a c i s t views on labour, his 157 approach was one of business unionism, and he had 'no time' to organise any more than three f a c t o r i e s . However, in the other two unions led by women, and assisted by Chinese immigrants, many of problems associated with organising workers described in the secondary l i t e r a t u r e on the clothing industry and noted in the UGWA in Vancouver, might be resolved. These changes in Vancouver suggest that they are more sen s i t i v e to the needs of Chinese immigrant women. F i n a l l y , i t was argued that in the face of weak unions, Chinese women have resorted to in d i v i d u a l i s e d forms of resistance. However, t h i s form of resistance w i l l not improve o v e r a l l conditions in the industry and in thi s sense i s a negative reaction. In the face of underhand t a c t i c s by employers and a p r o v i n c i a l government decidedly against unions, labour organisations w i l l continue to have d i f f i c u l t i e s organising women, despite th e i r commitment to workers in Vancouver's garment industry. 1 58 CHAPTER VI Fl e x i b l e Manufacturing in Vancouver's Clothing Industry 6.1 Introduction The Canadian clothing industry was severely affected by the recessions of the 1970s and early 1980s, and by cheaper impor.ts from newly i n d u s t r i a l i s i n g countries. By the end of 1982, employment in the garment industry n a t i o n a l l y had reached an a l l time low (Fig. 3.1). In Montreal, the largest clothing centre in the country, re s t r u c t u r i n g in response to the c r i s i s was evidenced by the loss of over 2000 jobs to homeworking in 1981 alone (Lipsig-Mumme, 1987). This chapter focuses on how a number of fashion clothing firms based in Vancouver, one of the smaller Canadian clothing centres, have restored p r o f i t a b i l i t y by implementing new manufacturing technology. To set the adoption of new technology into perspective, t h i s chapter examines five companies cu r r e n t l y using f l e x i b l e machinery in Vancouver, with p a r t i c u l a r reference to the depth to which f l e x i b l e techniques have penetrated the labour process. Speculations are also made concerning the extent to which other companies in the c i t y are l i k e l y to invest in the 159 new technology. F i n a l l y , the implications of these changes for labour, unions and the industry are analysed. The chapter draws from interviews with garment workers, factory owners, and trade union representatives. 6.2 F l e x i b l e Manufacturing in Vancouver's garment industry A few large fashion c l o t h i n g firms in Vancouver have invested in f l e x i b l e machinery, including marking/grading machines (see section 3.6.3), which are considered the most f l e x i b l e of the new systems. In spite of the high cost of the machines, 1 firms are w i l l i n g to lay out the c a p i t a l , since the return on t h i s investment i s r e l a t i v e l y quick. According to the manager of a firm which had recently purchased a marking/grading system, they would be able to recoup the investment within two years (4). At the same time, however, owners of smaller factories simply cannot a f f o r d t h i s new equipment (Table VI). This finding i s congruent with the arguments made by a number of authors (Holmes, 1987; Schroenberger, 1987; Gertler, 1988), including some on the c l o t h i n g industry (Hoffman, 1985; Gibbs, 1987). Hoffman in p a r t i c u l a r has stated that 1 The price of a marking/grading machine starts at around 1 00,000 d o l l a r s . 1 60 f i r m s s e l l i n g l e s s than 20 m i l l i o n d o l l a r s (US) of c l o t h i n g are u n l i k e l y to purchase the new machinery. Table VII Employment s i z e of c l o t h i n g f i r ms i n B r i t i s h Columbia Code Employment range Number of Firms 1 1-15 11 2 6-14 23 3 15-24 13 4 25-49 11 5 50-99 14 6 100-199 6 7 200-499 4 Source: Manufacturers D i r e c t o r y of B r i t i s h Columbia, 1987 In Vancouver, employment s i z e was found to be a s i g n i f i c a n t v a r i a b l e i n p r e d i c t i n g whether firms w i l l purchase f l e x i b l e technology. Of the 14 firms i n the sample, 4 a l r e a d y have a marking/grading machine while one other owner was p l a n n i n g to purchase one in the next few months. According to the p r o v i n c i a l government's Manufacturing D i r e c t o r y (1987), four of these f i v e f i r m s had an employment code of 7, or 299 to 400 employees while the other company had a code of 6, or 100 to 199 employees. One f i r m interviewed with an employment code of 5 (50-99 employees), recognised the advantages of the new equipment but s t i l l found the investment too 161 expensive: We'd l i k e to get into i t but i t s f a i r l y c o s t l y . Its a l o t faster too; we have three f u l l time people grading and marking. We have to s i t down and change sty l e s and i t takes a whole day to do just one. With the new machines we could do ten a day (11). Another firm with a code 3 employment le v e l informed me in graphic terms that she was 'panting' for the marker/grader, but at t h i s stage could not a f f o r d i t . If employment size i s an i n d i c a t i o n of which firms are l i k e l y to purchase f l e x i b l e technology, i t s pervasiveness w i l l be very limited since the average firm has only around f i f t y employees, and only 14 per cent of firms in Vancouver have employment codes of 6 or 7 (Table VII). In CAD and computerised cutting, machines the f i n a n c i a l constraints are more daunting, even for the larger fashion companies. In the sample of firms in Vancouver th i s equipment did not feature s i g n i f i c a n t l y and according to a sales representative they are very rare in the c i t y (Kirsten, pers. comm., 1987). One reason for th i s dearth of investment in CAD technology and computerised cutters i s the large c a p i t a l outlay required for their purchase. In part, the cost of these machines i s high because they are a recent innovation, unlike the grading/marking machines which have been available for several years: We have a grading/marking machine. We don't have a design machine; i t i s recent and f a i r l y expensive. You also need a technical person to run i t (2). In addition, the return on investment for CAD equipment and the computers cutter i s not as high, a further obstacle for many clothing -firms. According to the production manager of another firm: "We don't have a computerised cutter. They [heavy duty cutter] are fine for long production runs. We need more f l e x i b i l i t y for s t y l e changes. They also cost more than a m i l l i o n d o l l a r s " (7). Firm number 3 in the sample gives an indication of the scale of production necessary for the 'complete package' of f l e x i b l e technology (the design machine, the grading/marking machine and the sample computer c u t t e r ) . Not only i s i t the largest c l o t h i n g manufacturer in the c i t y with sales reaching over 50 m i l l i o n d o l l a r s a year, i t i s also one of the f i f t y largest firms in the province based on revenue (B.C. Business, July, 1988). Thus the large c a p i t a l outlay for the sophisticated equipment has prevented most firms from investing in the entire package of f l e x i b l e technology. It seems that most large fashion firms are only able to invest in a grading/marking system, one item, of the f l e x i b l e machinery currently available to c l o t h i n g manufacturers. F i n a n c i a l constraints are not the only reason why f l e x i b l e equipment i s not more pervasive in Vancouver's clothing industry. Manufacturers of standardised clothing are not interested in f l e x i b i l i t y and their production i s more c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the Fordist regime. Their designs are constant, dedicated machinery i s used, and economies of scale through long production runs are s t i l l the goal. Even manufacturers large enough to purchase the machinery are unlikely to do so because i t does not suit their production needs. One firm producing standardised T-sh i r t s was simply not interested in any of the f l e x i b l e machinery (8). Other factors also seem to play a role in l i m i t i n g the extent of f l e x i b l e equipment. For example, thi s was the response of the owner of a firm when, during an interview, he was asked whether he planned to purchase computerised machinery in the near future: "Oh no, we won't get the computerised stuff...You know you can't teach an old dog new t r i c k s , eh!" (5). Caution concerning the new machinery i s advisable in other ways too. Some of the so-called f l e x i b l e machinery being introduced i s not very f l e x i b l e and su i t s long production runs of standardised clothing, more c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of Fordism (see section 3.4.3). An example are sewing machines dedicated to one pa r t i c u l a r task which only speed up production without improving f l e x i b i l i t y . Instructive was t h i s statement in response to whether one firm planned to invest in a computerised sewing machine: "This business isn't mass production enough; you know what I mean? We don't do the mass s t u f f . We don't produce enough of one thing to make i t [computerised sewing machine] worthwhile" (11). On the other hand, a large manufacturer of more standardised clothing had invested a great deal of money in computerised sewing machines (10). Computers do not always imply f l e x i b i l i t y and equipment linked to microprocessors may not be more f l e x i b l e than the machines c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of Fordist or mass production methods. CAD and marking/grading computers, on the other hand, as discussed in chapter 3, are f l e x i b l e and.thus suited to changing fashions, and the consumption patterns which are apparently more pervasive in the new regime. In spite of these caveats, large fashion clot h i n g firms are benefitting from the new machinery. Improved turnaround time with the new equipment i s increasing t h e i r competitiveness v i s - a - v i s offshore manufacturers, which i s v i t a l because, "Price wise we can't compete with foreign imports - we compete with quicker turnaround and q u a l i t y garments" (1). Improved quality with computerised machines was an issue raised by another manager: You have to look at the qual i t y aspect. I don't think at that l e v e l that imports are a major consideration. Quick response is also the big thing. Everyone wants to make a decision on whether to order l a t e r and later in the .cycle, that i s as close as possible to when the new season's styles are revealed. There's duty protection too, f a i r i s f a i r (3). Large r e t a i l e r s play a role in 'encouraging' l o c a l firms to improve th e i r technology to maintain fast turnaround and q u a l i t y production: There i s n ' t a hard and fast rule but they [large r e t a i l e r s ] w i l l take advantage of you when times are hard. Also i f you are a day late they might send i t back. It happened to us. If you make a mistake they send i t back. They w i l l send i t back for any reason. Reputation i s very important. Very (3). A few of the larger companies interviewed subcontract offshore, but they too modify th e i r arrangements in accordance with the need for rapid turnaround: "If they [ r e t a i l e r s ] want i t in six months we go offshore. If they need i t in three months we make i t here" ( 1 ) ; and, We imported some sweaters in A p r i l - we'll get them in la t e November. There i s a d e f i n i t e six month c y c l e : three months to get the material, six weeks for production, then four weeks on the water. This i s i f everything goes to plan - which i t doesn't (2) 1 6 6 Delays at customs, problems in production at the offshore assembly plant and in delivery often r e s u l t in late shipments which are e s p e c i a l l y costly in the v o l a t i l e high fashion market. One importer in Vancouver, for example, received a shipment which had incorrect l a b e l l i n g on the garments and had more clothing in the boxes than had been disclosed. The result was that: the samples used by our sales s t a f f to a t t r a c t orders for Townline's spring l i n e are a week late already.... Some sales t r i p s to the east have already been cancelled..... Its getting so c r i t i c a l that i f we don't receive them i t could have devastating e f f e c t s on our spring business (Vancouver Sun, 17/9/1983). Realising the benefits of f l e x i b l e technology for the fashion industry, two other firms in the sample deli b e r a t e l y changed their l i n e s from standardised clothing, r e l a t i v e l y unaffected by s t y l e changes, to fashion wear. The manager of one of the firms summed up the reason for the change: We were into workwear up u n t i l 1980 or so...but the imports just k i l l e d i t - from the Third World and Eastern [Central] Canada. Now we change styles every year - they [offshore manufacturers] can't get the jump on u s . . . i t s not easy to produce offshore - one i s never sure of the quality or the d e l i v e r y . We are surviving because of our uniqueness and new fashion. It was a deliberate strategy in order to survive. We can't compete on a one-to-one basis because of wages (4). 167 While fashion firms closer to the market have the upper hand over manufacturers based offshore, companies with f l e x i b l e technology are more competitive l o c a l l y . R e t a i l e r s concerned with qu a l i t y production and quick response are l i k e l y to favour dealing with firms which are more f l e x i b l e and can guarantee delivery. Since only the larger firms have purchased the machinery, competitiveness may now be dependent on size ( c f . Hoffman, 1985). The need to be closer to the markets in the fashion industry has prompted some writers to argue that clothing firms may now return from the Third World back to the advanced c a p i t a l i s t countries. Mitter (1985) i s adamant on t h i s point: "...there has been a v i s i b l e s h i f t in the relocation of production in the clothing industry from the t h i r d world in favour of Western European countries, since the beginning of the 1980s" (p. 47); while Gibbs (1987) is somewhat more ambiguous: "Changing r e t a i l e r s strategies have encouraged the 'return' of clothing production to B r i t a i n " (p. 317). However, there i s l i t t l e support for the contention that clothing firms which relocated to the Third World are now returning to Vancouver or even to the country as a whole. Manufacturers and r e t a i l e r s continue to subcontract standardised clothing offshore in countries l i k e Hong Kong, Taiwan and Korea. Thus while imports have 168 had d i f f i c u l t y penetrating the fashion end of the market, offshore manufacturers s t i l l have the upper hand in the manufacture of standardised c l o t h i n g (Hoffman, 1985; Mitter, 1985; Gibbs, 1987). In a few papers, authors have described the growth of the c l o t h i n g industry more c a r e f u l l y , arguing for example that "Cheap female migrant labour" (Morokvasic, 1984, p. 890), or new production methods are responsible for the re-emergence or survival of the clothing industry in some advanced i n d u s t r i a l countries. From the data c o l l e c t e d in Vancouver t h i s description of the growth of the apparel industry in the c i t y i s favoured over the conclusion that firms are now returning to western c a p i t a l i s t countries. 6.3 Implications of F l e x i b l e Production While the goal of improving turnaround time and maintaining f l e x i b i l i t y i s the same for firms in the automobile and garment industries, f l e x i b l e manufacturing techniques have taken a rather d i f f e r e n t form in the clothing sector. Clothing manufacturers have turned to computerised and reprogrammable machinery, rather than the r a d i c a l l y new production methods more common in the auto industry. In t h i s , the f i n a l section of the chapter an explanation i s offered for the reasons why f l e x i b l e 169 manufacturing has taken a unique form on the shop floor of cloth i n g firms. In addition, the effects of the new techniques on workers s k i l l s w i l l also be examined in t h i s section. The ideas presented here are necessarily speculative, as they are based on a few firms which have implemented new techniques in Vancouver's garment industry. Machinery and Methods: New work methods introduced on the shop f l o o r s of automobile plants include quality c i r c l e s and work teams so that workers monitor their own production and i d e n t i f y with their work; a s h i f t from multi-sourcing to single sourcing; and the implementation of just-in-time delivery of parts to minimise costly inventories. Note that these methods are a response to s p e c i f i c problems in the North American auto industry which emerged in the 1970s such as poor qu a l i t y products and parts, resistance and al i e n a t i o n on the assembly l i n e , the expense of maintaining large inventories according to the 'just-in-case' system, and competition from Japanese manufacturers (Holmes, 1986). Large fashion clothing manufacturers have, s i m i l a r l y , responded to changes which have affected their p a r t i c u l a r sector. To remain competitive in markets which are more v o l a t i l e fashion firms have improved f l e x i b i l i t y and response time with programmable equipment such as marking/grading machines. 170 A number of firms have also implemented the just-in-time delivery of t e x t i l e s and many make to order only, and thereby reduce inventories. However, i t seems that the quality c i r c l e s and work teams have not been seen as an appropriate solution to the v o l a t i l i t y of North American markets. If q u a l i t y control c i r c l e s were unsuitable in the clothing industry, i t follows that the quality of production has not emerged as a problem in the c r i s i s , or, i t i s a problem which could not be solved using q u a l i t y control c i r c l e s . The answer; however, seems more complex; quality has always been an issue in the manufacture of clothing, but i t i s usually monitored through the 'ticketing' of garments, so that inspectors or supervisors are able to locate the problem (and the worker) immediately. If a worker consistently produces poor quality, and thi s i s usually a problem in the sewing room, she might be reprimanded or even f i r e d . The widespread a v a i l a b i l i t y of female labour has allowed managers and owners to pursue t h i s 'simple' form of c o n t r o l l i n g q u a l i t y , instead of resorting to expensive quality control c i r c l e s . The implementation of work teams to prevent al i e n a t i o n , on the other hand, i s not necessary on the shop floor of clothing f a c t o r i e s because th i s problem has rarely presented d i f f i c u l t i e s to owners. With large reserves of labour who can be trained r e l a t i v e l y quickly, 171 workers who are unable to cope with the alie n a t i n g and demanding conditions at work, simply quit or are f i r e d . High turnover rates in most clothing industries lends support to thi s argument (Hoel, 1982). Women whose income i s more v i t a l to the survival of the family (see chapter f i v e ) , must maintain high qu a l i t y and endure the al i e n a t i n g conditions, or risk losing their jobs and jeopardising the l i v e l i h o o d of their family. Women have also had problems in e l i c i t i n g the support of unions which are often weak, due to h i t and run nature of the industry (Lipsig-Mumme, 1987). Thus, qua l i t y production and the problem of alie n a t i o n are dealt with d i f f e r e n t l y in the clot h i n g industry and, as long as large reserves of female labour p e r s i s t , i t seems very unlikely that clothing firms w i l l turn to either q u a l i t y c i r c l e s or work teams. Firms have overcome problems in clothing manufacturing within the context of the industry i t s e l f . The idea that clothing firms have responded to the c r i s i s within the confines of their p a r t i c u l a r industry, accounts for the introduction of the mass production assembly l i n e on the shop floor of clothing f a c t o r i e s , apparently out of place in the new regime of f l e x i b l e production. Though estimates vary, a worker spends around 20 per cent of the time sewing the garment, a further 20 per cent i s accounted for by changing needles or thread and rests due to fatigue, while the remaining 60 per cent i s handling time (Bobbin, June 1988). Unit Production Systems (UPS), as the assembly l i n e in the clothing industry i s c a l l e d , are geared s p e c i f i c a l l y to reducing the r e l a t i v e l y long time spent handling clothing in order to improve response time. Thus, for fashion firms anxious to improve their turnaround time, the solution i s not in faster sewing machines or in new wage schemes to increase productivity, but in an area of 'work' which seems to have been neglected by c a p i t a l i s t s up to now. Control or F l e x i b i l i t y ? : Whether new manufacturing techniques are used to control labour, or are used simply to improve f l e x i b i l i t y in the new regime of accumulation, has interesting implications in the clothing industry. For example, from research on a number of industries (excluding clothing production) Shaiken et a l (1985) have c l e a r l y demonstrated that there are cases in which the new techniques have been introduced to control production: "Machinists tend to be prima donnas. This i s one of the motivations for buying NC [numerically controlled] equipment. It reduces our dependence on s k i l l e d labour" ( i b i d , p. 174). F l e x i b i l i t y for these firms was an issue, but only secondarily to the main problem of c o n t r o l l i n g the structure and pace of production on the.shop f l o o r . On the other hand, P o l l e r t ' s (1987) analysis of new methods of production provides an alternative explanation for the introduction of f l e x i b l e manufacturing techniques, 173 and i s c r i t i c a l of the Shaiken et a l theory. She argues that in many cases the equipment and techniques are not implemented with the express purpose to d e s k i l l labour and c e n t r a l i s e production; instead, they are a response by the firm for greater f l e x i b i l i t y in production. The fact that workers are d e s k i l l e d and control i s centralised i s only a by-product of the new techniques and machinery. Whether new manufacturing techniques are introduced to control production or to improve f l e x i b i l i t y may depend on the l e v e l of worker resistance and on the extent to which control i s a problem on the shop fl o o r of the factory in question. P o l l e r t ' s analysis c e r t a i n l y seems to explain the implementation of f l e x i b l e techniques in firms without a militant workforce and strong unions. However, when worker resistance i s high, the Shaiken et al theory seems more applicable; f l e x i b l e techniques are implemented or production may be reorganised p r i m a r i l y to prevent disruptions on the shop f l o o r . This kind of explanation, viz.., that where worker resistance i s high f l e x i b l e techniques are introduced primarily to c o n t r o l work, while when i t i s low the technology i s implemented primarily to improve response time i s , however, rather problematic. If i t were applied to the clothing industry in Vancouver i t might be argued that since there has never been a s t r i k e in the industry and unions are generally weak, f l e x i b l e manufacturing has been introduced to the large clothing f a c t o r i e s primarily to improve f l e x i b i l i t y while the e f f e c t s on the work environment are merely an unintended consequence. This would assume that clothing factory managers are unaware of the e f f e c t s their new machinery w i l l have on worker's s k i l l s and on control in general. However, a cursory glance at any of the trade journals geared to the garment industry d i s p e l l s this myth (e.g. Bobbin, June, 1988). Control and f l e x i b i l i t y are two sides of a c o i n : the new methods are introduced to clothing f a c t o r i e s with both advantages in mind. R e - s k i l l i n g and D e s k i l l i n g : The e f f e c t s of f l e x i b l e manufacturing techniques and new work methods have been interpreted d i f f e r e n t l y by d i f f e r e n t schools of thought. French Regulationists and most Marxists support Braverman's thesis on the tendency towards the d e s k i l l i n g of work in c a p i t a l i s m . An important caveat in Braverman's theory, supported by the r e g u l a t i o n i s t s , i s that not all work i s d e s k i l l e d . To quote A g l i e t t a and Braverman in turn on t h i s issue: ...the creation of new s k i l l e d jobs i s far from making up for the destruction of old s k i l l s r e s u l t i n g from the change in work organisation, inasmuch as i t makes sense to speak of compensation of t h i s kind, since the s k i l l s involved are heterogeneous and thus incommensurable ( A g l i e t t a , 1979, p. 126). 175 The mass of workers gain nothing from the fact that the decline in th e i r command over the labour process i s more than compensated for by the increasing command on the part of managers and engineers. On the contrary, not only does their s k i l l f a l l in an absolute sense, but i t f a l l s even more in a relative sense (Braverman, 1974, p. 425). On the other hand, Piore and Sabel (1984), of the MIT school, argue that while the tendency in mass production was toward d e s k i l l i n g , in the manufacture of varied products in the new regime s k i l l s are recomposed. Where products are continually changing, the fragmentation of work described by Braverman i s not possible and a s k i l l e d workforce i s required. Evidence from the sample of firms in Vancouver's apparel industry and the description of new equipment in trade magazines tend to confirm the arguments of the Marxists. S k i l l s in a ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' c l o t h i n g factory are usually divided along gender li n e s and h i g h l y - s k i l l e d work is controlled by men, while women perform the l e s s - s k i l l e d tasks. It i s argued that men have con t r o l l e d the highly s k i l l e d work through closed shops and control of union organisations (Cockburn, 1985; L i p s i g Mumme, 1987). However, the implementation of f l e x i b l e equipment in Vancouver such as grading/marking machines, i s d e s k i l l i n g t r a d i t i o n a l male jobs. As discussed in chapter three, grading and marking were tasks which could not be 1 76 monitored in an objective manner. In addition, i t was d i f f i c u l t for managers or owners to increase the pace of production in these male controlled jobs. With the computerised grading/marking equipment, on the other hand, the designer i s expected to work far faster and there i s an objective record of his/her work. Following Braverman's d e f i n i t i o n that tasks are d e s k i l l e d when workers lose control over the pace and structure of work, i t seems that these jobs have been d e s k i l l e d . For male cutters, the expense of computerised cutting machines means that t h e i r s k i l l s in t h i s area are secure, for the time being. . However, as the technology improves and the costs decline, the work of cutters in factories with f l e x i b l e technology may become redundant. The work of women sewers, on the other hand, has been s i m p l i f i e d since the beginning of the century and ' s k i l l ' now based not on a d e t a i l e d knowledge of the making of a garment, but on dexterity, speed and qua l i t y work. There is thus l i t t l e room for further d e s k i l l i n g . However, as we have seen, more sophisticated sewing machines increase the pace of work, p a r t i c u l a r l y when a single operator works on two machines. Although their work i s not further d e s k i l l e d , operator's tasks are degraded as they lose even more control over the pace of their work. There are at least two reasons why men's work is the ' l o g i c a l ' target for d e s k i l l i n g (Cockburn, 1985). F i r s t , men receive the highest wages of any production worker on the shop f l o o r . With a 25 to 60 per cent savings in labour costs in pattern making, the new machines are an esp e c i a l l y a t t r a c t i v e investment for many companies (Gibbs, 1987). A second reason for the d e s k i l l i n g of men's work is that, u n t i l the introduction of the computerised marking/grading and cutting equipment, their work was very much a c r a f t . As discussed in chapter 3, u n t i l managers quantified or computerised the work, i t could not be speeded up or structured as i s the case in women's work. De s k i l l i n g i s not always a one-way process and, as Ag l i e t t a and Braverman have argued, some workers may gain new s k i l l s . This i s true in clo t h i n g industries which have invested in f l e x i b l e manufacturing equipment. For example, designers have acquired new computer s k i l l s with the marking/grading machines. In addition, one designer found that her work environment had improved: "My job was mindless before the company bought the grading/marking system" (4). In order to operate the new system they must go through a training period which usually l a s t s no longer than a few months once they already have design s k i l l s . Designers on the new machines are also p e r i o d i c a l l y 178 retrained as the system is upgraded or a more advanced software package i s developed. These comments on s k i l l , control versus f l e x i b i l i t y , and on q u a l i t y control c i r c l e s , are, as discussed above, necessarily l i m i t e d to firms which have implemented f l e x i b l e manufacturing technology. For example, in firms without the new techniques, the labour process i s s t i l l t r a d i t i o n a l : male s k i l l i s based on a long apprenticeship, while women's work i s regarded as unskilled though based on dexterity and speed. D e s k i l l i n g in clothing production has thus affected only a small group of workers. For most production workers, of greater concern in the hit-and-run industry i s not whether they w i l l lose their s k i l l ; instead, i t i s whether they have a job the next day. 179 6.4 Conclusion From the sample of firms interviewed in Vancouver, i t appears that the introduction of f l e x i b l e machinery i s having a lim i t e d impact on the cl o t h i n g industry. Of the 14 firms interviewed, 5 have already purchased or w i l l purchase f l e x i b l e equipment within the next six months. S i g n i f i c a n t l y , larger companies are more l i k e l y to invest in the machines, consistent with a number of papers in the l i t e r a t u r e (Hoffman, 1985; Gibbs, 1987). Changing market conditions and new technology have allowed firms in the c i t y to enter a niche in which less expensive imports have only a n e g l i g i b l e e f f e c t . These firms manufacture fashion clothing, where markets are small and uncertain. Lead times are v i t a l in this sector and f l e x i b l e equipment i s reducing the time from design to manufacture substantially. Offshore producers are unable to deliver apparel to the market fast enough to meet the v o l a t i l e demand in t h i s clothing l i n e . However, although some companies are investing in new machinery, many are unable or unwilling to purchase ' the equipment. As discussed in chapter four, many of these are smaller firms which are geared to l o c a l markets. Computerised machines are not always as f l e x i b l e as is often assumed and a microprocessor does not immediately 180 imply f l e x i b i l i t y . Most of computerised sewing machines, for example, are dedicated to one or two pa r t i c u l a r tasks and only increase the pace of production. This type of equipment i s suitable for long production runs of standardised clothing, • c h a r a c t e r i s t i c of the Fordist regime, rather than the smaller runs more common in the fashion industry. An important point a r i s i n g from t h i s conclusion i s that, in general, f l e x i b l e equipment such as the design and marking/grading computers w i l l be implemented in the large fashion clothing f a c t o r i e s , while dedicated sewing machines w i l l be purchased by standardised clothing manufacturers. F l e x i b l e machinery in the clothing industry i s generally having a detrimental effect on labour on the shop f l o o r of apparel firms. Grading, marking and cut t i n g , s k i l l e d work and the preserve of men, i s being d e s k i l l e d by computerised machinery. These tasks are the ' l o g i c a l ' choice for d e s k i l l i n g : the pace of their work could not be set under the old regime, the work could not e a s i l y be quantified, and the wages for these jobs are the highest on the shop f l o o r . Already fragmented and subject to wage payment schemes designed to increase production, women's work w i l l become more d e b i l i t a t i n g with the new equipment. In some cases women w i l l be operating two machines at once. The work of designers, on the other hand, seems to have improved with the introduction of 181 computer aided designing and grading/marking machines. They have learned new s k i l l s and t h e i r work environment i s reportedly improving. The e f f e c t s of the new machines are uneven, but seem to be weighted against those on the shop f l o o r . Though the introduction of f l e x i b l e manufacturing techniques i s being implemented among a number of clothing firms, the form i t has taken i s d i f f e r e n t than has been the case in other industries, most notably the automobile industry. Investments are being made in more advanced equipment only and there i s no evidence of new work techniques, quality control c i r c l e s or qu a l i t y of working l i f e schemes. It was argued that the methods were not being introduced because in the automobile industry they represented a response to a c r i s i s in t h i s sector. In clothing production the problems of alienation and poor quality . have been dealt with in other ways. The introduction of work teams and q u a l i t y c i r c l e s i s unlikely in the clothing industry; i t seems instead that f l e x i b l e manufacturing techniques are a response to problems which are unique to p a r t i c u l a r i n d u s t r i e s . CHAPTER VII Conclusion The introduction of f l e x i b l e manufacturing techniques in a number of industries, has recently received a great deal of attention in academic journals. Debates have focussed on the pervasiveness of the methods; t h e i r e f f e c t s on s k i l l s and work l i f e ; and the s p a t i a l ramifications of firms implementing new production techniques. Widely divergent views, p a r t i c u l a r l y concerning the e f f e c t s on workers s k i l l s , attest to the need for a better understanding of these changes. In the cloth i n g industry, while there i s l i t t l e evidence to suggest that new work methods are being introduced, f l e x i b l e equipment such as computerised designing, marking/grading, cutting and sewing machines are currently a v a i l a b l e to manufacturers. These machines seems p a r t i c u l a r l y suited to the manufacture of women's apparel which tends to be unstandardised due to frequent s t y l e changes. On the other hand, manufacturers of more standardised clothing, where designs seldom change and production i s c h a r a c t e r i s t i c a l l y Fordist, are not l i k e l y to benefit from the f l e x i b l e technology. This case study was based on the garment industry in Vancouver, B r i t i s h Columbia. While the size of the industry in Vancouver i s small compared to the rest of the 183 country, the recent growth of the women's fashion industry has been spectacular. The res u l t s of thi s study suggest, however, that at t h i s stage there exist s i g n i f i c a n t b a r r i e r s to the implementation of f l e x i b l e equipment in production. It i s only the very large fashion firms that have invested in any f l e x i b l e machinery. Indicative of the r e s t r i c t i o n s , one firm which had purchased a s i g n i f i c a n t amount of f l e x i b l e technology was also the largest clothing manufacturer in the c i t y with sales of over $50 m i l l i o n a year. Even firms with a li m i t e d amount of f l e x i b l e equipment were, according to employment size, the largest in the c i t y . Many smaller fashion firms are unable to raise the c a p i t a l for the equipment even though the potential benefits are s i g n i f i c a n t . Standardised clothing manufacturers in Vancouver, on the other hand, have not purchased the new technology because i t does not suit their needs. Their production techniques are s t i l l based on the Fordist p r i n c i p l e s of long production runs of standardised clothing, economies of scale, and machinery dedicated to one p a r t i c u l a r task. These smaller firms without new technology, some of which are investors from Hong Kong, respond to downturns in the economy through a f l e x i b l e or contingent labour force. In Vancouver t h i s labour force comprises mainly Chinese immigrant women who are hired and f i r e d depending on economic conditions. Their insecure position in a new 184 country has made them vulnerable to conditions in the clothing industry. These women also have l i t t l e recourse to unions which are generally weak due to the precariousness of the industry, the actions of anti-union employers and state l e g i s l a t i o n . For firms in the fashion industry large enough to lay out the c a p i t a l for the new machines, the advantages are tremendous. F l e x i b l e equipment improves turnaround time and f l e x i b i l i t y , both v i t a l for manufacturers of fashion apparel. Quick response allows large fashion firms to compete with offshore manufacturers, whose lead time for fashion clothing i s often too long to reach the v o l a t i l e markets. The improved competitive position of large fashion firms v i s - a - v i s foreign competition and the necessity of being closer to the market i s in part responsible for the growth of the clothing industry in Vancouver. At the same time, large fashion garment manufacturers are more competitive than'smaller firms in the c i t y unable to purchase the new equipment. A second advantage of the equipment for factory owners i s that i t reduces their dependence on s k i l l e d male workers who command the highest wages on the shop f l o o r . Marking, grading and pattern making, are now performed by the designer with sophisticated computer software. These tasks are speeded up with the new equipment and computer disks and tapes allow managers to monitor their work more 185 c l o s e l y . For women workers i n the in d u s t r y ( m a c h i n i s t s ) , the new machines simply speed up work, making an a l r e a d y d e b i l i t a t i n g job worse. As d i s c u s s e d in chapter s i x , however, these comments on s k i l l and work l i f e are onl y a p p l i c a b l e to the few firms which have implemented the new techniques. On the shop f l o o r of ' t r a d i t i o n a l ' companies men continue to c o n t r o l s k i l l e d work while women's jobs are viewed as u n s k i l l e d . F i n a l l y , as has been noted elsewhere, the s h i f t to new methods of manufacturing i s not l i k e l y to be an immediate or even r a p i d p r o c e s s . Many firms i n the c l o t h i n g i n d u s t r y cannot a f f o r d the new technology. However, i t i s a l s o argued on the b a s i s of t h i s case study that the s h i f t may never be a b s o l u t e , even i n the long term. The s u r v i v a l of small s t a n d a r d i s e d c l o t h i n g manufacturers who r e l y on a cont i n g e n t labour- f o r c e and are u n w i l l i n g to in v e s t in f l e x i b l e equipment, suggests that mass p r o d u c t i o n methods w i l l p e r s i s t . Thus the s h i f t s to f l e x i b l e methods in Vancouver's garment i n d u s t r y i s a complex and uneven process. References: Secondary Sources A g l i e t t a , M. , 1979: A Theory of Capitalist Regulation: The US Experience, New Left Books, London. Aho, CM., and Aronson, J.D., 1985: Trade Talks, Council on Foreign Relations, New York. Anthias, F., 1983: Sexual d i v i s i o n s and ethnic adaptation: the case of Greek-Cypriot women, in A. Phizacklea (ed.), One Way Ticket: Migration and Female Labour, Routledge and Kegan Paul, London. Arnopolous, S.M., 1979: Problems of immigrant women in the Canadian labour force, Canadian Advisory Council on the Status of Women, Ottawa. Beechy, V., 1985: The shape of things to come, Marxism Today, August. Belec, J ., Holmes, J. and Rutherford, T., 1987: The r i s e of fordism and the transformation of consumption norms: mass consumption and housing in Canada, 1 930-1945, in R. Harris and G. Pratt (eds.) Housi ng Tenure and Social Class, Research report, National Swedish Institute for Building Research, Almquist and Wiksell, Stockholm. Braverman, H., 1974: Labour and Monopoly Capital, Monthly Review, New York. C a s t e l l s , M. and Portes, A., 1986: World underneath: the orig i n s , dynamics and effects of the informal sector, Paper presented at the Conference on the Comparative Study of the Informal Sector, Harper's Ferry, West Vi r g i n i a . Cho, S.K., 1985: The labour process and c a p i t a l mobility: the l i m i t s to the new international d i v i s i o n of labour, Poli l i c s and Society, 19(2), 185-222. 187 Christopherson, S., 1987: Workforce f l e x i b i l i t y : implications for women workers, Institute for Social Science Research, Working Papers in the Social Sciences, 3(2), 1-15, University of C a l i f o r n i a , Los Angeles. Clark, G.L., 1986: The c r i s i s of the midwest auto industry, in A.J. Scott and M. Storper (eds.), Production, Work, Territory: The Geographical Analysis of Industrial Capitalism, Allen and Unwin, Boston. Cockburn, C , 1985: Machinery of Dominance: Women, men and technical know-how, Pluto, London. Coriot, B., 1980: The restructuring of the assembly l i n e : a new economy of time and control, Capital and Class, 11, 34-43. Coyle, A., 1982: Sex and s k i l l in the organisation of the clothing industry, in J. West (ed.), Work, Women and the Labour Market, Routledge and Kegan Paul, London. Creese, G., 1984: Immigration p o l i c i e s and the creation of an e t h n i c a l l y segmented working class in B r i t i s h Columbia, 1880-1923, Alternate Routes, 1, 1-34. Edwards, R., 1979: Contested Terrain: The Transformation Workplace in the Twentieth Century, Basic Books, New York. E s t a l l , R.C., 1985: Stock control in manufacturing: the just-in-time system and i t s l o c a t i o n a l implications, Area, 17(2) , 129-133. Frobel, H., Heinrichs, J. and Kreye, 0., 1980: The New International Division of Labour, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge. Gannage, C , 1986: Double Day, Double Bind, Women's Press, Toronto. 188 Gannage, C., 1987: A world of difference: the case of women workers in a Canadian garment factory, in H.J. Moroney and M. Luxton (eds.), Feminism and Political Economy, Methuen, London. Gaskell, J., 1986: Conceptions of s k i l l and the work of women: some h i s t o r i c a l and p o l i t i c a l issues, in R. Hamilton and M. Barrett (eds.), The Politics of Diversity, Book Centre, Montreal. Gertler, M., 1988: The l i m i t s to f l e x i b i l i t y : comments on the post-fordist v i s i o n of production and i t s geography, Paper presented at the AAAG conference in Phoenix, A p r i l . Gibbs, D., 1987: Technology and the clothing industry, Area, 19(3), 313-320. Gordon, D.M., 1988: The global economy: new e d i f i c e or crumbling foundations, New Left Review, 168, 24-65. Harvey, D., 1987: Fl e x i b l e accumulation through urbanization: r e f l e c t i o n s on 'post modernism' in the American c i t y , Antipode, 19(3), 260-286. Hiebert, D., 1987: The geogrpahy of Jewish immigrants and the garment industry in Toronto, 1901-1931: A study of ethnic and class r e l a t i o n s , Unpublished Ph.D thesis, University of Toronto. Hoel, B., 1982: Contemporary clothing 'sweatshops': Asian female labour and c o l l e c t i v e organisation, in J. West (ed.), Work, Women and the Labour Market, Routledge and Kegan Paul, London. Hoffman, K., 1985: Clothing, chips and competitive advantage: the impact of microelectronics on trade and production in the garment industry, World Development, 13(3), 371-392. Holmes, J . , 1986: The organisation and lo c a t i o n a l structure of production subcontracting, in A.J. Scott and M. Storper (eds.), Production, Work, Territory: The Geographical Analysis of Industrial Capitalism, Allen and Unwin, Boston. 189 Holmes, J., 1987a: Technical change and the restructuring of the North American automobile industry, in K. Chapman and G. Humphreys (eds), Technical Change and Industrial Policy, B a s i l Blackwell, Oxford. Holmes, J., 1987b: The c r i s i s of Fordism and the restructuring of the Canadian auto industry, in J. Holmes and C. Leys (eds.), Front yard, Backyard: The Americas in the Global Crisis, Between the Lines, Toronto. Holmes, J . and Leys, C , 1987: Introduction, in J . Holmes and C. Leys (eds.), Front yard, Backyard: The Americas in the Global Crisis, Between the Lines, Toronto. Hutton, T., 1985: Vancouver: an analysis of economic structure, growth and change, City of Vancouver, Economic Development Of f i c e , Vancouver. Jenkins, R. , 1984: Divisions over the international d i v i s i o n of labour, Capital and Class, 22, 28~57. Katz, H. and Sabel, C.F., 1985: Industrial r e l a t i o n s and in d u s t r i a l adjustment in the car industry, Industrial Relations, 24, 295-315. Keynon, A., 1986: History repeats i t s e l f in the garment industry, Pacific Tribune, A p r i l 30, 22-23. Lamphere, L., 1979: Fighting the piece-rate system: new dimensions of an old struggle in the apparel industry, in A. Zimbalist, (ed.) Case Studies on the Labour Process, Monthly Review, New York. Lamphere, L., 1985: Bringing the family to work: women's culture on the shop f l o o r , Feminist Studies, 11(3), 519-40. Ley, D., 1980: Lib e r a l ideology and the po s t i n d u s t r i a l c i t y , Annals of the Associati on of American Geographers , 70(2), 238-258. 190 L i p i e t z , A., 1986: New tendencies in the international d i v i s i o n of labour: regimes of accumulation and modes of regulation, in A.J. Scott and M. Storper (eds.), Production, Work, Territory: The Geographical Analysis of Industrial Capitalism, Allen and Unwin, Boston. L i p i e t z , A., 1987: Mirages and Miracles, Verso, London. Lipsig-Mumme, C , 1987: Organizing women in the clothing trades: homework and the 1983 garment s t r i k e in Canada, Studies in Political Economy, 22,41-71. Malarek, V., 1987: Haven's Gate, Canada' s Immigration Fiasco, Macmillan, Toronto. Mansell, J ., 1978: An inventory of innovative work arrangements in Ontario, Toronto Research Branch, Ontario Ministry of Labour, Toronto, Ontario. Marx, K., 1976: Grundrisse, Penguin, London. Mazur, J . , 1979: The return of the sweatshop, New Leader, August 13, 7-10. Mitter, S., 1985: Industrial restructuring and manufacturing homework: immigrant women in the UK clothing industry, Capital and Class, 24, 37-80. Morokvasic, M. , 1984: Birds of passage are also women..., International Migration Review, 18(4), 886-907. Morokvasic, M. , Phizacklea, A., and Rudolph, H., 1986: Small firms and minority groups: contradictory trends in the French, German and B r i t i s h clothing industries, International Sociologist, 1(4), 397-419. Morris-Suzuki, T., 1984: Robots and capitalism, New Left Review, 147, 109-122. Murray, F., 1983: The decentralisation of production - the decline of the mass c o l l e c t i v e worker?, Capital and CIass , 19, 74-99. 191 Ng, R., 1986: The so c i a l construction of immigrant women in Canada, in R. Hamilton and M. Barrett (eds.), The Politics of Diversity, Book Centre, Montreal. Peck, J.A. and Lloyd, P.E., 1987: Conceptualising processes of s k i l l change: a new approach, Paper presented at the conference, of the International Geographical Union Commission on Industrial Change, Rabka, Poland. Peet R., 1987a: Industrial change and economic c r i s i s , in R. Peet (ed), International Capitalism and Industrial Restructuring, Allen and Unwin, New York. Peet R., 1987b: Industrial restructuring and the c r i s i s of international capitalism, in R. Peet, (ed), International Capitalism and Industrial Restructuring, Allen and Unwin, New York. Piore, M.T. and Sabel C.F., 1984: The Second Industrial Divide, Basic Books, New York. Pollak, N., 1988: Neither bread nor roses, Kinesis, A p r i l , 1988, 11-12. P o l l e r t , A., 1987: The ' f l e x i b l e firm': a model in search of r e a l i t y (or a policy in search of practice?), Warwick Papers in Industrial Relations, University of Warwick, Number 19, 1-40. P o l l e r t , A., 1988: Dismantling f l e x i b i l i t y , Capital and Class, 34, 42-75. Rainnie, A.F., 1984: Combined and uneven development in the clothing industry: the eff e c t s of competition on accumulation, Capital and Class, 22, 141-156. Rinehart, J ., 1983: Appropriating workers knowledge: qual i t y control c i r c l e s at a General Motors plant, Studies in Political Economy, 1 3, 75-97. 1 92 Roobeek, A., 1987: The c r i s i s of Fordism and trie r i s e of a new technological paradigm, Fortunes, 19(2), 129-154. Safa, H.I., 1981: Runaway shops and female employment: the search for cheaper labour, Signs, 7(2), 418-433. Sassen-Koob, S., 1980: Immigrant and minority workers in the organisation of the labour process, Journal of Ethnic Studies, 8(1), 1-34. Sassen-Koob, S., 1984: Notes on the incorporation of Third World women into wage-labour through immigration and off-shore production, International Migration Review, 18(4), 1144-67. Sassen-Koob, S., 1985: Changing cosmopolitan and labour market locations of Hispanic immigrants in New York City, 1960-1980, in J . Borjas and M. Tienda (eds), Hispanics in the US Economy, Academic Press, F l o r i d a . Sayer, A., 1985: New developments in manufacturing and their s p a t i a l implications, Working paper number 49, Urban and Regional Studies, University of Sussex. Schroenberger, E., 1987: Technological and organisational change in automobile production: s p a t i a l implications, Regional Studies, 21(3), 199-214. Scott, A., 1983a: Industrial organization and the logic of intra-metropolitan location, I: t h e o r e t i c a l considerations, Economic Geography, 59, 233-250. Scott, A., 1983b: Industrial organization and the logic of intra-metropolitan location, I I : A case study of the printed c i r c u i t s industry in the greater Los Angeles region, Economic Geography, 59, 343-67. Scott, A., 1984: Industrial organization and the logic of intra-metropolitan location, I I I : a case study of the women's dress industry in the greater Los Angeles region, Economic Geography, 60, 3-27. 1 93 Selzer, P., 1987: Garment industry investment promotion seminar, Presented in Hong Kong, Ministry of Economic Development, Vancouver, B r i t i s h Columbia. Serafin, B. , 1985: Garment worker's unions struggle to organise, Vancouver Postal Worker, July 1985, 4-5. Shaiken, H., Herzenberg, S. and Kuhn, S., 1986: The work process under more f l e x i b l e production, Industrial Relations, 25(2), 167-183. Soja, E., Morales, R., and Wolff, G., 1987:. Industrial restructuring: an analysis of s o c i a l and s p a t i a l change in Los Angeles, in R Peet (ed), International Capitalism and Industrial Restructuring, Allen and Unwin, New York. Solo, R., 1985: Across the i n d u s t r i a l divide: a review a r t i c l e , Journal of Economi c Issues, 19(3), 829-836. Steedman, M., 1986: S k i l l and gender in the Candadian clothing industry, 1890-1940, in C. Heron and R. Storey (eds.), On the Job: Confronting the Labour Process in Canada, McGill-Queen's University Press, Kingston, Ontario. Storper, M., 1987: The new i n d u s t r i a l geography, 1985-1986, Urban Geography, 8(6), 585-589. Storper, M., and Christopherson, S., 1987: Flex i b l e s p e c i a l i s a t i o n and regional i n d u s t r i a l agglomerations: the case of the U.S. motion picture industry, Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 77(1), 104-117. Sugimori, J., et al, 1977: Toyota production system and kanban system: materialisation of just-in-time and respect-for-human system, International Journal of Production Research, 15, 553-564. T h r i f t , N.J., • 1986: The geography of international economic disorder, in R.J. Johnston and P.J. Taylor (eds.), A World in Crisis, B a s i l Blackwell, Oxford. Trevor, C , 1962: Josephine's story, Canadian Labour, 7(9), 9-10. Waldinger, R., 1985: Immigration and i n d u s t r i a l change in New York City's apparel industry, in J . Borjas and M. Tienda (eds), His panics in the US Economy, Academic Press, F l o r i d a . Waldinger, R., 1986: Through the Eye of the Needle: Immigrants and Enterprise in New York's Garment Trades, New York University, New York. Weiner, E. and Green, H., 1984: 'A s t i t c h in time': New York's Hispanic garment workers in the 1980s, in J.M. Jensen and S. Davidson (eds.), A Needle, a Bobbin, a Strike, Temple University, Philadelphia. Westwood, S., 1984: All Day Every Day. Factory and Family in the Making of Women's Lives, Pluto, London. Wortman, S., 1980: The unhealthy business of making clothes, Canadian Dimension, 14(7), 34-36. Zimbalist, A. (ed.), 1979: Case Studies on the Labour Process, Monthly Review, New York. Newspapers, Trade Journals and other magazines BC Business, July, 1988, p. 60-1, Top 100 B.C. companies. Bri t i sh Col umbi a Enterprise, February, 1988, p. 4-5; 12-13, There's more to BC's economy than meets the eye. Bobbin, September, 1985, p. 34, New products and services, Bobbin, October, 1985, p. 34-5, Those who cut i t . 195 Bobbin, November, 1985, p. 49, Leotra systems. Bobbin, May, 1988, p. 77-82, Put technology into context. Bobbin, June, 1988, p. 22, Setting the record straight. Equity, July/August 1988, p. 71-83, Eddie has the lowdown on s e l l i n g . Globe and Mail, 2/5/88, p. b1, b4, Manufacturers p r o f i t margins at highest l e v e l since 70s. Labour Statesman, 31/9/55, p. 20, Garment workers sign 5 c i t y firms. Labour Statesman, 31/7/56, p. 1, Ladies garment workers a l l - o u t drive pays o f f . Montreal Gazette, 12/3/87, p. a6, Experts can't find source of dizziness. Montreal Gazette, 4/4/87, p. a3, Clothing firm, union say nothing after 6 women fai n t on the job. Montreal Gazette, 28/4/87, p. a6, 1 out of 5 women workers suffer d i s a b i l i t y : study. Province, 16/9/55, p. 5, Union garment workers plan Vancouver organising drive. Province, 25/5/59, p. 10, New garment factory here. Province, 30/3/74, p. 29, Union asks import cuts. Province, 9/11/77, p. 13, Jones boys p i l e up a te n t f u l of histor y . Province, 27/12/77, p. 21, Clothing curbs extended again 196 Province, 10/5/78, p. 29, Prices expected to soar. Province, 25/7/85, p. 3, Garment workers suffer abuse. Province, 25/8/85, p. 7, 'Sweatshops' attacked. Toronto Star, 9/3/86, p. f5, Vancouver women struggle to reform sweatshops. Vancouver Sun, 10/5/41, p. 17, Gold rush brought big clothing business here. Vancouver Sun, 20/5/53, Progress e d i t i o n , p. 4, Needle trades new 'growth' industry. Vancouver Sun, 11/7/55, p. 15, Union aims to sew up industry. Vancouver Sun, 17/1/75, p. 77, Clothing to be returned over improper l a b e l l i n g . Vancouver Sun, 10/12/76, p. 40, Local importers bemoan as clothing quotas take hold. Vancouver Sun, 10/2/77, p. 21, Torn up over clothing r e s t r i c i t o n s . Vancouver Sun, 10/10/79, p. d , Clothing industry now feels more comfortable. Vancouver Sun, 17/8/83, p. a1,a2, Imported clothing delayed by customs. Vancouver Sun, 31/5/85, p. a20,Garment union launches i t s f i r s t drive in forty years. Vancouver Sun, 26/7/85, p. a 14,- Sweat shop claims anger plant owner. Vancouver Sun, 15/7/87, p. d 0 , B i l l 19 c a l l e d a bad f i t . Vancouver Sun, 16/9/87, p. a17, Garment workers reject wage increase. Vancouver Sun, 30/4/88, p. d12, Made at home. Vancouver Sun, 2/8/88, p. e2, Women's wear industry in ta t t e r s : weather trends blamed. S t a t i s t i c a l and other goverment p u b l i c a t i o n s Annual Report on Text i l e s and Clothing, 1982; 1983; 1984; 1985; 1986; 1987, Tex t i l e and Clothing Board. B r i t i s h Columbia Manufacturers' Directory, 1987 Edition, A directory of manufacturing in B r i t i s h Columbia, Ministry of Economic Development, V i c t o r i a . B r i t i s h Columbia Ministry of Economic Development, "Business Immigration", September 1987. Clothing Inquiry, 1977: A report to the Minister of Industry Trade and Commerce, T e x t i l e and Clothing Board, May 29. Report on the men's factory clothing industry, 1920-1949, Department of Trade, Industry and Commerce, Dominion Bureau of S t a t i s t i c s , General Manufacturers Divi s i o n , Ottawa. Report on the women's factory clothing industry, 1920-. 1949, Department of Trade, Industry and Commerce, Dominion Bureau of S t a t i s t i c s , General Manufacturers D i v i s i o n , Ottawa. T e x t i l e and Clothing Inquiry, Report to the Minister of Regional Industrial Expansion, vol 1, October, 1985. 198 S t a t i s t i c s of Industry in B r i t i s h Columbia, 1871-1934, Research Department, Economic Council of B r i t i s h Columbia, V i c t o r i a , 1935. S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 31-203, Manufacturing industries in Canada. S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 31-208, Manufacturing industries by province. S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 34-216, Men's clothing industry. S t a t i s t i c s Canada, 34-217, Women's and children's clothing industr i e s . P e r s o n a l Communica t ions Chiang, K., Employee at MOSAIC, Service for non-English speaking residents. Kirsten, M., Sales representative for equipment in clothing f a c t o r i e s . Selzer, P., Industry Development O f f i c e r , Ministry of Economic Development, Province of B r i t i s h Columbia. 

Cite

Citation Scheme:

        

Citations by CSL (citeproc-js)

Usage Statistics

Share

Embed

Customize your widget with the following options, then copy and paste the code below into the HTML of your page to embed this item in your website.
                        
                            <div id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidgetDisplay">
                            <script id="ubcOpenCollectionsWidget"
                            src="{[{embed.src}]}"
                            data-item="{[{embed.item}]}"
                            data-collection="{[{embed.collection}]}"
                            data-metadata="{[{embed.showMetadata}]}"
                            data-width="{[{embed.width}]}"
                            async >
                            </script>
                            </div>
                        
                    
IIIF logo Our image viewer uses the IIIF 2.0 standard. To load this item in other compatible viewers, use this url:
http://iiif.library.ubc.ca/presentation/dsp.831.1-0097720/manifest

Comment

Related Items